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In bringing before the Public a new edition of 
Johnson's collection of Scotish Songs, entitled The 
Scots Musical Museum, a few words of preface 
may be required, both in regard to the history of the 
work itself, and to the nature of the Notes or Illus- 
trations with which it is now accompanied. 

The original publisher and the ostensible editor of 
the work, was James Johnson, a Musicseller and En- 
graver in Edinburgh. His object, as first announced, 
was, " in a portable form, to unite the Songs and 
Music of Scotland in one general collection ;" audit 
was commenced in May 1787> ^J the publication of 
the First Part, or volume, containing One Hundred 
Songs, which appeared " under the patronage, direc- 
tion, and review of a number of gentlemen of un- 
disputed taste, who have been jDleased to encourage, 
enrich, and adorn the whole literary part of the 
performance." Johnson has nowhere stated who 
these gentlemen were, nor does it appear that any 
one of them took a prominent share in the publi- 


cation.* Dr Blacklock was an occasional contributor 
both of songs and airs ; Dr Beattie has also been 
mentioned, along" with Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee, 
as persons who interested themselves in the pro- 
gress of the work ; but, whatever aid Johnson might 
have derived from these or other gentlemen " of 
undisputed taste," it may be confidently asserted, 
that, unless for one fortunate circumstance, " The 
Scots Musical Museum" might never have extended 
beyond a couple of parts or volumes ; or, at least, 
might never have acquired the reputation which it 
has enjoyed for half a century, and which it still pro- 
mises to retain. 

The circumstance to which we allude was the visit 
of Burns the Poet to Edinburgh, in November 
1786. Having become acquainted with the publisher 
before the first part was completed, he furnished 
Johnson with two original Songs, Nos. 77 and 78, 
Green grow the Rashes, and Young Peggy 
blooms, to the tune of Loch Eroch Side ; and 
probably also rendered him other assistance. The 
Musical Museum was a work so congenial to the 
Poet's mind, that it evidently had a decided effect in 
directing his efforts more exclusively to Song-writ- 
ing. The early associations connected with his love 
of ballad-poetry, and the rustic strains familiar to 
the peasantry, were thus awakened, and his intimate 

' The volumes of the Musical Museum, as originally published, 
were " Humbly dedicated to the Catch Club, instituted at Edin- 
burgh June 1771." On the completion of the Sixth and last 
volume, in 1803, Johnson substituted a new set of title-pages, 
dedicating the work " To the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland." 


acquaintance with the older and more popular melo- 
dies with which such strains had long been happily 
united, enabled him, with a rare degree of felicity, 
thus to give vent to his feelings, by which he has 
attained the first rank as a Lyric Poet. The interest, 
or rather enthusiasm, which he felt in contributing 
to the success of Johnson's undertaking, appears very 
manifest in his correspondence ; and Burns, from ' 
this period, ought to be considered not simply as a 
contributor, but as the proper and efficient editor of I 
the work. He not only contributed a large number 
of original songs, expressly written for it, but he 
applied to every person likely to render assistance ; 
and, while visiting different parts of the country, he 
diligently gleaned fragments of old songs, hitherto 
unpublished, which he completed with additional 
lines or stanzas, as might be required ; and, at the 
same time, he frequently determined the airs to which 
the words should be set, besides writing the prefa- 
tory notices to the several parts or volumes of what 
he esteemed to be a national work. 

The following are the terms in which Burns writes 
to some of his friends respecting Johnson's collection. 
To Mr Candlish, then at Glasgow, in June 1787j he 
says, " I am engaged in assisting an honest Scotch 
enthusiast, a friend of mine, who is an engraver, and 
has taken it into his head to publish a collection of 
all our Songs set to Music, of which the words and 
music are done by Scotsmen. This, you will easily 
guess, is an undertaking exactly to my taste. I have 
collected, begged, borrowed, and stolen, all the songs 
I could meet with." To the Rev. John Skinner, 


author of Tullochgorum, in October 1787j he says, 
in reference to the Museum, " I have been abso- 
lutely crazed about it, collecting old stanzas, and 
any information remaining respecting their origin, 
authors, &c." In the same month, he informs another 
correspondent in the North, that " an engraver, 
James Johnson, in Edinburgh, has, not from mer- 
cenary views, but from an honest Scotch enthusiasm, 
set about collecting all our native songs, and setting 
them to music, particularly those that have never 
been set before, Clarke, the well-known musician, 
presides over the musical arrangement ; and Drs 
Beattie and Blacklock, Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee, 
and your humble servant, to the utmost of his small 
power, assist in collecting the old poetry, or some- 
times, for a fine air, make a stanza when it has no 
words." To Johnson himself, in November I788, 
he remarks, " I can easily see, my dear friend, that 
you will very probably have four volumes. Perhaps 
you may not find your account lucratively in this 
business ; but you are a patriot for the music of 
your country, and I am certain posterity will look on 
themselves as highly indebted to your public spirit. 
Be not in a hurry ; let us go on correctly, and your 
name shall be immortal." Johnson appears most 
wisely to have followed Burns's directions, and with 
such aid, he was enabled to give his collection a dis- 
tinct original character, as well as greatly to extend 
his original plan j a Second, Third, and Fourth 
Part, each containing One Hundred Songs, having 
successively appeared in the months of March I788, 
February 1790, and August 1792. 


Shortly after the appearance of the Fourth Part, 
Burns had engaged with a like congenial spirit to as- 
sist Mr George Thomson in his projected collec- 
tion of Scotish Songs. His correspondence with that 
gentleman, extending from September 1792, to July 
1796 (the month in which the Poet died), has now 
been nearly forty years before the public. This cor- 
respondence included upwards of sixty songs, written 
expressly for Mr Thomson's select and elegant pub- 
lication. That the progress of the Musical Museum 
was retarded in consequence of this engagement, 
need scarcely be remarked. Hitherto, an average 
interval of two years had intervened between the 
publication of each part ; but five years elapsed, and 
the Poet himself died before the Fifth Part was com- 
pleted, to which he had, however, furnished the chief 
portion of the contents; and the Sixth Part, with 
which the work terminates, did not appear till June 
1803, or e ight years after the death of the Ayrshire 
bard, y/fcvui^ ^N^. 

Although Burns's attention had been thus diverted 
into another channel for a space of nearly four years, 
while giving form and vitality to that collection, 
his original predilection in favour of the Musical 
Museum was unchanged, as appears from his let- 
ters addressed to Johnson while the Fifth Part was 
in progress ; and more particularly from his last 
letter, which has no date, but which both Johnson 
and Cromek fix as having been written on the 4th 
of July 1796, or seventeen days before the Poet 
died. An accurate facsimile of that interesting and 
affecting letter is given at the end of this Preface, as 


a suitable accompaniment to a work which the pub- 
lisher might well acknowledge was indebted to him 
" for almost all of those excellent pieces which it con- 
tains." In this letter, Burns says, " You may probably 
think, that for some time past I have neglected you 
and your work ; but, alas ! the hand of pain, and 
sorrow, and care, has these many months lain heavy 
on me I Personal and domestic afflictions have almost 
entirely banished that alacrity and life with which I 
used to woo the rural Muse of Scotia." And, in 
another part, he adds, " Your work is a great one ; 
and now that it is near finished, I see, if we were to 
begin again, two or three things that might be 
mended ; yet, I will venture to prophesy, that 



To enlarge, in this place, on the services which 
Burns rendered to the Lyric Poetry of Scotland, 
might well be regarded as superfluous. It is but 
proper, however, to consider, in how far such ser- 
vices were influenced by his connexion with the 
present work. It has often been asserted, that all 
his best songs were expressly written for Mr Thom- 
son's collection, thus virtually claiming for it a dis- 
tinction to which it is in no respect entitled, that of 
having directed his mind to the subject of song- 
writing. It is with no wish to lessen the importance 
of that work, the merits of which rest on somewhat 
different grounds from that of Johnson's, that I con- 
ceive it necessary in this place to remark, that for six 


years previous to its commencement, Burns had ex- 
clusively contributed songs to Johnson's Museum, 
written too in his happiest moods, when nothing had 
occurred permanently to depress his spirits ; and that 
the original songs which it contains, not only exceed 
in number, but may fairly be put in competition in 
regard to merit, with those that were written for 
the later publication. In considering his contribu- 
tions to these respective collections, there is like- 
wise this marked difference, that while for the one 
the airs and subjects were generally suggested to 
the poet, for the other his fancy was altogether 
uncontrolled ; and although he was frequently led 
to write with a degree of carelessness, and with 
less delicacy, than if such effusions had to undergo 
the ordeal of criticism, and to bear his name as the 
author, this want of polish is amply compensated 
by the greater freshness, spirit, and vivacity of his 
compositions. But, on this point, I cannot do better 
than quote Dr Currie's words, prefixed to his selec- 
tion of the Songs by Burns contained in the Museum. 
" In his communications to Mr Johnson, to which 
his name was not in general affixed, our Bard was 
less careful than in his compositions for the greater 
work of Mr Thomson. Several of them he never 
intended to acknowledge, and others, printed in the 
Museum, were found somewhat altered afterwards 
among his manuscripts. In the selection [^consisting 
of 47 Songs]} which follows, attention has been paid 
to the wishes of the Author as far as they are known. 
The printed songs have been compared with the 
MSS., and the last corrections have been uniformly 


inserted. The reader will probably think many of 
the Songs which follow, among the finest produc- 
tions of his Muse." 2 

Nor was it alone by his original productions that 
Burns enriched the Musical Museum and the lite- 
rature of his country. The diligence which he used 
in collecting, from all quarters, the remains of old un- 
published ballads and songs, and snatches of popular 
melodies, has been emulated by persons without one 
spark of genius, and possessed of more zeal than judg- 
ment ; but the skill and happiness with which, as with 
a master-hand, he imparted spirit and life to mutilated 
fragments, or remodelled those effusions unfit for 
ordinary society, attributed to the Scotish Muse as 
she went " high-kilted o'er the lea," have never been 
surpassed. " Burns, who, of all poets that ever 
breathed (to use the fine words of a kindred spirit), 
possessed the most happy tact of pouring his genius 
through all the meanderings of music, was unrivalled 
in the skill of brooding over the rude conceptions of 
our old poets, and in warming them into grace and 
life. He could glide like dew into the fading 
bloom of departing song, and refresh it into beauty 
and fragrance."^ He himself says, " The songs 
marked Z in the Museum, I have given to the world 
as old verses to their respective tunes ; but, in fact, 
of a good many of them little more than the chorus 
is ancient, though there is no reason for telling every 
body this piece of intelligence." * In regard to this 
skill. Sir Walter Scott remarks : " The Scotish 

^ Burns's Works, by Currie, vol. iv. p, 269. 

^ Cunningham's Songs of Scotland, vol. i. p. 66. 

* Letter quoted in Croraek's Select Scotish Songs, vol. ii. p. 194<. 


Songs and Tunes preserved for Burns that inex- 
pressible charm which they have ever afforded to 
his countrymen. He entered into the idea of col- 
lecting their fragments with all the zeal of an enthu- 
siast ; and few, whether serious or humorous, past 
through his hands without receiving some of those 
magic touches, which, without greatly altering the 
song, restored its original spirit, or gave it more than 
it ever possessed. So dexterously are these touches 
combined with the ancient structure, that the rifac- 
ciamento, in many instances, could scarcely have 
been detected, without the avowal of the Bard him- 
self."^ It has indeed been questioned, by the 
same high authority, whether it were fortunate, or 
otherwise, that Burns, during the latter period of his 
life, should have exclusively confined himself to Song- 
writing. *' Notwithstanding the spn-it of many of 
the lyrics of Burns, and the exquisite sweetness and 
simplicity of others, we cannot but deeply regret 
that so much of his time and talents was frittered 
away in compiling and composing for musical collec- 
tions. . . . . Let no one suppose that we undervalue 
the songs of Burns. When his soul was intent on 
suiting a favourite air with words humorous or ten- 
der, as the subject demanded, no poet of our tongue 
ever displayed higher skill in marrying melody to 
immortal verse. But the writing of a series of songs 
for large musical collections, degenerated into a 
slavish labour, which no talents could support, led 
to negligence, and above all, diverted the Poet from 
his grand plan of Dramatic composition." ® 

^Quarterly Review, vol. i. p. 30. ^ lb. p. 32. 


That Burns in many instances overtasked himself 
while complying with continuous requests to furnish 
songs to suit particular airs, is undeniable, but that the 
proper bent of his genius tended more especially to 
lyric poetry, is equally certain. The instantaneous 
and lasting popularity of his songs can be ascribed to 
no fortuitous circumstance, but solely to the mode 
in which he expressed those feelings, so true to 
nature, which could be appreciated alike by all 
classes. How many collections of Songs before and 
since his time have appeared and been forgotten ; 
and in the two works which owe their chief distinc- 
tion to his aid, how immeasurably superior are the 
songs of Burns to the united contributions of the 
many distinguished names which are found standing 
in juxtaposition with his own. May we not therefore 
be justified in expressing a doubt, whether, if Burns 
had succeeded in writing one or two successful 
dramas, this would in any way have been com- 
parable to the advantage which our literature has 
gained by his Songs, or would have outweighed 
the almost unequalled influence which they have 
exercised not among his countrymen only. Happy, 
indeed, had it been, could the mention of Burns's 
name only call up the vision suggested by the words 
of our great English poet, when he speaks of 

Him who walked in glory and in joy, 
Following' his plough upon the mountain side. 

But it is impossible to forget the depressing circum- 
stances in which Burns was placed ; his scanty annual 
income, which " was for some time as low as fifty, 


and never rose to above seventy pounds a-year ;" his 
increasing- cares, and his unremitting attention to the 
vexatious and harassing duties of his official situation, 
appointed " to guard ale-firkins ;" all these con- 
joined, left him neither time nor disposition for any 
such sustained literary efforts. It must always be 
a humiliating consideration to think, that some suit- 
able occupation or place had not been found, which 
might have left him unharassed by pecuniary diffi- 
culties. From the date of publication of the subscrip- 
tion edition of his Poems at Edinburgh, to that of 
his decease, being a period of nine years, he may be 
said absolutely to have received no pecuniary advan- 
tage from his writings. This doubtless was in some 
degree owing to his own lofty but mistaken notions, 
which led him to reject any stipulated recompense, 
as if this implied a mere sordid or speculating in- 
ducement to literary enterprise. There is no distinct 
proof that he ever received any acknowledgment for 
his contributions to the present work,^ beyond the 
occasional donation of copies to be presented to his 
friends. All the world likewise, unfortunately knows 
the extent of benefit which he derived from his 
connexion with its more costly and ambitious rival 
collection. With no prospect of amended circum- 
stances, need we wonder, therefore, (as Dr Currie 
remarks,) " that as his health decayed, his proud 
and feeling heart sunk under the secret conscious- 

^ In a printed paper, dated 15th of March 1819, soliciting Sub- 
scriptions in favour of Johnson's widow, it is stated, that her hus- 
band had " on more than one occasion befriended our favourite 
Scotish Poet in his pecuniary distresses ;" but I am not aware of 
any thing to justify such a statement. 


ness of indigence and the apprehensions of absolute 
want. Yet poverty never bent the spirit of Burns to 
any pecuniary meanness ;" ® and the character of the 
Poet stands only the more nobly in having- thus, in 
midst of poverty and personal distress, and the in- 
creasing cares of a rising family, earned such an en- 
during fame. All the lamented and unfortunate cir- 
cumstances connected with his literary career are in- 
deed long since past, and cannot be recalled ; but 
the recollection of them will remain indelible, as such 
incidents in the lives and fortunes of men of genius 
retain a peculiar and lasting degree of interest ; and 
these Songs, the fruits of his genius in matured life, 
for which he gained neither fee nor reward, " are 
likely to transmit the name of Burns to all future 
generations."® — He died on the 21st of July 1796, 
in the thirty-eighth year of his age. 

James Johnson, the original publisher of the 
Musical Museum, survived the completion of the 
work nearly eight years. Of his personal history 
not much is known. From the few letters still pre- 
served, or that have been published, it appears that 
Burns entertained for him a sincere personal regard. 
In his first letter, 8d of May 1787j before setting out 
on his Border Tour, he sends him a song received 
from Dr Blacklock, and says, *' Farewell, my dear 
Sir ! I wished to have seen you, but I have been 
dreadfully throng [busy], as I march to-morrow. 
Had my acquaintance with you been a little older, 

8 Burns's Works, by Currie, vol. i. p. 229. 

9 Edinburgh Review, vol. xiii. p. 263. 


I would have asked the favour of your correspond- 
ence, as I have met with few people whose company 
and conversation gave me so much pleasure, because 
1 have met with few whose sentiments are so con- 
genial to my own.*' In a letter written in 1794*, 
he says, " As to our Musical Museum, I have better 
than a dozen songs by me for the fifth volume 
to send with Mr Clarke when he comes. ... If 
we cannot finish the fifth volume any other way, 
what would you think of Scots words to some beau- 
tiful Irish airs ? In the mean time, at your leisure, 
give a copy of the Museum to my worthy friend Mr 
Peter Hill, bookseller, to bind for me, interleaved 
with blank leaves, exactly as he did the Laird of 
Glenriddell's, that [I may insert every anecdote I 
can learn, together with my own criticisms and 
remarks on the songs. A copy of this kind I 
shall leave with you, the editor, to publish at some 
after period, by way of making the Museum a book 
famous to the end of time, and you renowned for 
ever].*'^ In another letter, about the same time, 
but without date, he says, " My dear Sir, I send by 
my friend Mr Wallace, forty-one songs for your fifth 
volume. Mr Clarke has also a good many, if he 
have not, with his usual indolence, cast them at 
the cocks. I have still a good parcel among my 
hands, in scraps and fragments, so that I hope we 
will make a shift for our last volume. You should 

1 The words within brackets, in consequence of the original 
letter being- mutilated, have been supplied from Cromek's Reliques. 
He, however, has formed strange compounds, by gleaning sentences 
out of three distinct communications to Johnson, and printing 
them as one letter. 


have heard from me long ago ; but over and above 
some vexatious share in the pecuniary losses of these 
accursed times, I have all this winter been plagued 
with low spirits and blue devils, so that I have 
almost hung my harp on the willow-trees." And 
in his last letter, already quoted (of which an exact 
fac-simile is afterwards given), he says to Johnson, 
" I am extremely anxious for your work, as indeed 
I am for every thing concerning your or you welfare. 
You are a good, worthy, honest fellow, and have 
a good right to live in this world — because you de- 
serve it. Many a merry meeting this publication has 
given us, and possibly it may give us more, though, 
alas I I fear it." 

Although numerous collections of Scotish Songs, 
with or without music, and in every possible form, 
have appeared during the last fifty years, the Musi- 
cal Museum still keeps its ground. Such collections 
as those of Mr George Thomson, of the late R. A. 
Smith, and of Messrs John Thomson and Finlay 
Dun, possess each of them strong and individual 
claims j but the present work far exceeds these, or any 
others that have appeared, in the number of the 
genuine old melodies of Scotland. When the publi- 
cation was first jjrojected, Johnson's chief advisers, 
Dr Blacklock and Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee, it 
has been remarked, "were of opinion that these wild 
yet pathetic and melodious strains, these fine breath- 
ings and heartfelt touches in our songs, which true 
genius can alone express, were bewildered and 
utterly lost in a noisy accompaniment of instruments. 
In their opinion, the full chords of a thorough bass 


oug-ht to be used sparingly and with judg-ment, not 
to overpower, but to support and strengthen the 
voice at proper pauses : that the air itself should be 
first played over, by way of symphony or introduc- 
tion to the song ; and at the close of every stanza, a 
few bars of the last part of the melody should be 
repeated, as a relief to the voice, which it grace- 
fully sets off;" &c. ..." The plan of publishing our 
Scottish songs in this simple, elegant, and chaste 
manner, was highly approved of by the late Mr 
Stephen Clarke. This celebrated organist and 
musician readily agreed to select, arrange, and har- 
monize the whole of the melodies ; a task which, 
from his brilliant genius, fine taste, and profound 
scientific knowledge, he was eminently qualified to 
perform." ^ This want of every thing like florid 
accompaniments, has been held as a peculiar recom- 
mendation. In regard also to the Songs, the collec- 
tion is unrivalled for the extent of the good old 
standard productions of the Lyric Muse, including 
so many of Burns's finest compositions. 

Johnson died at Edinburgh on the 26th of Feb- 
ruary 1811.^ He left a widow in such indigent cir- 
cumstances, that at a subsequent period, it has been 

2 Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, July 1817, p. 377. 

3 <' Died at Edinburgh [26th of February 1811], much re- 
gretted, Mr James Johnson, Engraver, Musicseller, and Copper- 
plate Printer ; — being the first who attempted to strike music upon 
pewter, whereby a great saving is made in the charge of that 
article. Mr Johnson will long be remembered in the musical 
world. He published several interesting pieces of late ; and in 
none was more successful than in his elegant woi'k, ' The Scots 

Musical Museum,' in six volumes, &c." — (Scots Magazine, 1811, 

p. 318.) 


stated, she had nothing more to subsist on than " the 
occasional donations of a few of her husband's old 
friends and acquaintance ;" and, after remaining for 
some time as an out-pensioner, she at length found 
shelter as an inmate of the Edinburgh Charity 
Workhouse. * 

Three or four years after Mr Johnson's death, 
the original pewter plates and remaining copies 
of " The Scots Musical Museum," including the 
copyright, and such of Burns's manuscript com- 
munications^ as had been preserved, were ex- 
posed to sale, and became the property of the late 
Mr William Blackwood, bookseller. In the view 
of bringing out the work in a new and improved 
form, he was desirous to have it accompanied with 
notes or illustrations. This was indeed part of the 
scheme originally contemplated by Burns, as appears 
from passages in other letters, besides the one above 
quoted. Mr Thomson having informed him that 
he expected to receive from Dr Beattie, " an Essay 
upon the subject of our National music," to illustrate 
his own collection. Burns in his letter, dated 26th 
of January 1793, immediately replied : " Dr Beattie's 
essay will, of itself, be a treasure. On my part, I 

4 This appears from a printed paper entitled " Notice respect- 
ing Mrs Johnson, widow of the late Mr James Johnson, Engraver 
in Edinburgh," dated March 15, 1819. 

^ When Cromek was in Edinburgh collecting materials for his 
" Reliques of Burns," in the year 1808, he mentions having seen 
180 Songs and Poems in Burns's autograph, which he had trans- 
mitted to Johnson for the Musical Museum. The greater por- 
tion of these interesting transcripts are still preserved. 


mean to draw up an appendix to the Doctor's essay, 
containing- my stock of anecdotes, &c., of our Scots 
Songs. All the late Mr Tytler's" anecdotes I have 
by me, taken down in the course of my acquaint- 
ance with him, from his own mouth. I am such 
an enthusiast, that in the course of my several 
peregrinations through Scotland, I made a pilgri- 
mage to the individual spot from which every song 
took its rise, ' Lochaber' and the ' Braes of Ballen- 
den' excepted. So far as the locality, either from 
the title of the air or the tenor of the song, could 
be ascertained, I have paid my devotions at the par- 
ticular shrine of every Scots Muse." Neither the 
Essay nor the Appendix was undertaken; but Burns, 
in an interleaved copy of the first four volumes of 
the Musical Museum, which belonged to Riddeli 
of Glenriddell, had inserted a number of occasional 
notes and remarl^s regarding the songs. Mr Cromek^ 
having obtained the use of this copy, transcribed and 
published them in his volume of Burns's Reliques, 
1808, and again in his collection of " Select Scotish 
Songs," 1810 ; and these notes usually form an in- 
tegral part in the modern editions of the Poet's 

In preparing, therefore, to publish an edition of 
the Musical Museum, with notes, illustrative of the 

^ William Tytler of Woodhouselee, Esq., writer to the signet, 
and author of a Dissertation on Scottish Music, a Vindication. 
of Mary Queen of Scots, and other works. He died on the 12th 
of September 1792, in the eighty-first year of his age. 

'^ R. H. Cromek was an engraver in London. He died in 
1812. See note respecting him in vol. v. p. 456*. 



Lyric Poetry and Music of Scotland, Mr Black- 
wood applied, according to my recollection, to more 
than one individual supposed to be most competent, 
for such a task. It was finally intrusted to the late 
William Stenhouse, Esq., Accountant in Edin- 
burgh, who, along with more than ordinary antiqua- 
rian research, and much general information, pos- 
sessed a thorough practical knowledge of music, and 
who, moreover, had been personally acquainted with 
Johnson, the publisher of the work, and with Clarke,® 
by whom the airs had been chiefly harmonized. To 
one of the earliest numbers of " Blackwood's Edin- 
burgh Magazine," Mr Stenhouse, under the signa- 
ture of " Scotus," communicated a notice of the pro- 
jected edition, accompanied with two specimens of 
his illustrations to Songs 37 and 66 ; which shows 
that at the time, in July I8I7, he must have made 
considerable progress in his undertaking. Having 
completed his series of Illustrations, the printing was 
commenced towards the close of 1820, and in the 
course of a few months was completed, extending 
in all to 512 pages. Some delay unfortunately oc- 
curred in regard to a general preface for the work, 
which eventually occasioned the publication to be 
laid aside. Whether this preface was intended to 

8 Stephen Clarke was a teacher of music, and organist of the 
Episcopal Chapel in the Cowgate, Edinburgh. He survived 
Burns little more than twelve months, having died at Edinburgh 
on the 6th of August 1797. " He was composer of many musi- 
cal pieces of considerable merit ;" and after his death, his son and 
successor, William Clarke, appears to have rendered Johnson the 
like service in harmonizing the airs for the concluding volume of 
the Musical Museum. Clarke died about the year 1820. 


embrace a detailed historical essay on Scotish Song-, 
and Mr Stenhouse's declining health or other avoca- 
tions prevented its being completed, or whether such 
a preface was actually written, I cannot distinctly re- 
member ; but this point cannot now be ascertained, 
as no traces of such a preface were found among 
his papers ; and in the lapse of time both the Editor^ 
and the Proprietor died, and the copies of the printed 
sheets remained in the printer's warehouse neglected 
as an imperfect work. 

^ Although I knew Mr Stenhouse personally for many years, I 
regret my inability to furnish any particular details of his history. 
He was, I believe, a native of Roxburghshire, and was born in the 
year 1773. He was brought up as an accountant in Edinburgh, 
in the office of Charles Selkrig, Esq. His chief work was 
published under the title of " Tables of Simple Interest, and of 
Commission, Brokerage, or Exchange, at all the usual rates per 
cent, constructed on a plan entirely new, easy, and mathematically 
accurate. By William Stenhouse, accountant." Edinburgh, 1806, 
large 8vo. These Tables have always been highly esteemed. 

In a MS. tour, written in 1816, by Mr Alexander Campbell 
(see the present work, vol iv. p. 373*), he thus describes, while 
waiting for the Jedburgh coach, his meeting with Mr Stenhouse's 
father : " Mr Scott of Maxpoffle (he says) accompanied me to 
New Elden, where, on entering the smithy, he kindly took an 
old gentleman by the hand, and calling him Mr Stenhouse,' who 
turned out to be the father of my acquaintance Mr William 
Stenhouse, the accountant in Edinburgh. The old gentleman is 
above eighty, is still pretty active, has all his faculties, his sight 
excepted (being a little impaired), is sensible, conversable, and 
cheerful. He told me many entertaining anecdotes of my friend, 
his son William, who showed a very early turn for mental acquire- 
ments. The Blucher (a diligence coach) coming up, we nodding, 

Mr William Stenhouse died at Edinburgh on the 10th of 
November 1827, at the age of fifty-four, and was interred in St 
Cuthbert's churchyard. 


At this time, when the new edition of the Mu- 
sical Museum appears after such a protracted in- 
terval, it may be stated, that the Publishers have 
brought it out in compliance with the request of 
several persons interested in such works, or who 
knew Mr Stenhouse, and were aware that his Illus- 
trations contained a mass of curious matter regard- 
ing- the poetry and music of the last century. In 
regard to this edition, therefore, I have only to re- 
mark, that the Work itself remains substantially the 
same as when originally published by Johnson, re- 
taining the old title-pages and prefaces, most of which 
were written by Burns, as showing the progressive 
advancement of the work, and the information ob- 
tained or communicated regarding the names of the 
authors of the Songs ; but the whole has been printed 
off, by a new process, in a superior style as to exter- 
nal appearance. To each volume is now added 
the portion of Mr Stenhouse's Illustrations that re- 
lates to the songs which it contains ; and these are 
accompanied with a series of additions and correc- 
tions, distinguishing those which have been obligingly 
contributed by C. K. Sharpe, Esq., by having his 
initials subjoined. Mr Stenhouse's Notes, it will be 
observed, remain precisely as they were thrown off 
nearly twenty years ago. Had they been reprinted, 
I should have presumed to make various changes, 
by omission or correction. It will be remarked, 
that many of our old favourite Songs are the com- 
position of persons who never appeared as professed 
authors ; and although most of them flourished at so 
late a period as during the last century, the infor- 


mation to be obtained respecting their personal his- 
tory is far less satisfactory than could have been de- 
sired. In the Additional Illustrations, therefore, with- 
out entering too much into detail, our chief endeavour 
has been to ascertain some particulars respecting the 
history of the less known Song-writers, whose names 
appear in the pages of the Musical Museum, and more 
especially of those Ladies who have enriched our 
Lyric poetry with some of its finest compositions. 
If this attempt has not been successful, it was not 
from any want of research or direct application, 
where it could be made, to the relations or personal 
friends of the several authors ; and I have availed 
myself of many obliging communications, which are 
duly acknowledged, as the surest mode of giving 
authenticity to the information thus •recorded. 

I cannot conclude this Preface without expressing 
my best thanks to James Chalmers, Esq., for the 
loan of Sir Robert Gordon of Straloch's MS. Lute- 
book, written in 1627 ; to George Farquhar 
Graham, Esq., for the very obliging manner in which 
he deciphered a variety of ancient airs from that 
manuscript, some of which, rendered into modern 
notation, have been introduced in the Additional 
Illustrations; to William Dauney, Esq., Advocate, 
for frequent advice and assistance in regard to these 
old airs ; and above all, to Charles Kirkpatrick 
Sharpe, Esq., my coadjutor in what may be truly 
described as a labour of love. 

Signet Library, Edinburgh, 
m.dccc. xxxix. 


The high estimation in which the National Music of 
Scotland has always been held, renders it a theme of more 
than ordinary interest. There is indeed so much beauty 
and unaffected simplicity in the modulation and general 
character of our native melodies, that they seldom fail to 
convey delight to persons of all classes, although uninflu- 
enced by early or local associations. These melodies have 
likewise been long inseparably connected, or identified with 
the singularly varied effusions of the Lyric Muse of Scot- 
land ; and it is scarcely necessary to remark, how happily 
the words and airs are usually adapted to each other, 
whether it be in strains of tender passion and refined sen- 
timent, or of comic humour and rustic festivity. It would 
have been singular, therefore, had there been no attempts 
made to ascertain the origin of such a style of national 
music; yet, notwithstanding the ingenious speculations 
of several learned writers, it must be confessed that the 
subject remains as obscure and uncertain as ever. What 
is it, at best, but idle conjecture, whatever view may be 
adopted ? It has been imagined, for instance, that our na- 
tive melodies, in their structure and succession of intervals, 
have preserved an affinity to the old Enharmonic scale 


of the Greek Music; or assuming for Scotish Melody an Ori- 
ental origin, that it found a resting-place in this remote 
and barren clime, in the Westward progress of civilisation. 
While some persons have, in general terms, deduced the 
history of Scotish Music from the time of the Romans ; 
others, without ascending to so remote a period, discover in 
our popular airs, what they consider a striking resemblance 
to the ecclesiastical modes, or the Canto-fermo of the Ro- 
mish Church-service. The invention or improvement of 
our Melody has likewise been assigned to particular indi- 
viduals, — to James the First, King of Scotland, (1424 — 
1437 ;) or to David Rizzio, (1563 — 1566.) Such a distinc- 
tion has also been claimed for certain nameless shepherds 
and shepherdesses, inhabiting at some undefined period 
(called a pastoral age) the secluded pastoral vales of the 
South of Scotland. Unfortunately, the absence of all 
historical evidence of any considerable antiquity, and the 
inability to produce any proofs, in a written form, of the 
existence of our present popular tunes of an older date 
than the close of the sixteenth century, is but poorly com- 
pensated for by uncertain traditions or conjectures, however 
ingenious and plausible. 

It would be altogether foreign to the purpose of the 
present work, to attempt any thing like an Historical In- 
quiry into the origin and progress of Scotish Music. An 
eminent English antiquary, Joseph Ritson, whose accuracy 
and research deserve unqualified praise, suggested, that the 
previous step to any such inquiry would be, " to determine 
which of the airs now extant are to be considered as the 
original or most ancient ;" and he himself, with great 
care, embodied in his " Historical Essay on Scotish 
Song," the various dispersed and incidental notices that 


he was able to glean from authentic writers. He was led, 
however, to conclude, that no direct evidence could be 
produced of the existence of scarcely any Scotish tunes 
now known, prior to the year 1660 ; and that not so much 
as one of these could be " found noted, either in print or 
manuscript, before that period." 

Since Ritson's time, more extensive research has thrown 
additional light on this head ; and the subject has been re- 
sumed in the Preliminary Dissertation to a volume recent- 
ly published under the title of " Ancient Scotish Melodies," 
from the Skene MS. The author, Mr Dauney, has, with 
great zeal and diligence, retraced Ritson's steps, and brought 
to light much new and interesting information, both respect- 
ing the history of music, and the musical instruments com- 
monly used in Scotland prior to the seventeenth century ; 
and this work bears ample evidence, that to an accurate and 
enlightened acquaintance with musical scfence, he unites 
an enthusiastic antiquarian zeal, so requisite for the proper 
investigation of such a subject. This volume is further 
enriched by a valuable addition contributed by Mr Finlay 
Dun, an eminent professional musician, in the form of an 
Analysis of several of our old popular Melodies, which 
cannot fail to be highly esteemed by competent judges. — 
Still, it may be asserted, that the history of Scotish Music 
is yet in its infancy of illustration ; and although there is 
little probability that it ever can be completely elucidated, 
it may be suggested, whether it might not be the most 
effectual mode to remove in part the obscurity that sur- 
rounds the origin of our music, to institute a more pro- 
found and comprehensive inquiry into the affinities of the 
National music of other countries. 

In this place, it occurred to the Editor, that however 


humble the attempt, and but of limited interest, it might 
not be unsuitable to present a Chronological List of the 
various publications of Scotish Music, of a date prior to 
the completion of Johnson's Museum. The following list 
cannot pretend to be either complete, or the arrangement 
correct. The common absurd practice in all kinds of 
music, of omitting the dates of publication, and the frequent 
alteration of publishers' names on the title-pages, renders 
accuracy in such details a matter of some difficulty. Oc- 
casional biographical notices of the Composers or Collectors 
during the last century, are also added, to relieve a dry 
catalogue of title-pages. 

Of the works described, the Editor possesses several of 
the earlier ones, but by far the greater number of those 
printed during the last century are in the possession of 
Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe, Esq. 


The work commonly but improperly known under the 
name of " Knox's Liturgy and Psalms," is here noticed from 
the circumstance, that the first edition of it, in 1565, is the 
earliest book printed in Scotland that contains musical no- 
tation. It is so extremely rare, that perhaps not two perfect 
copies are in existence. It has the following title : — " The 
Forme of Prayers and Ministration of the Sacra- 
ments, &c., vsed in the English Church at Geneua, ap- 
proued and receiued by the Churche of Scotland, where- 
unto besydes that was in the former bokes, are also added 
sondrie other prayers, with the whole Psalmes of Dauid 
in English meter. Printed at Edinbvrgh, by Robert 
Lekprevik. m.d.lxv." Small 8vo. 


The several Psalms are set to particular tunes, which are 
printed with music types, at the head of each ; or a refer- 
ence is made when the same tune was appropriated to more 
than one Psalm. It may be added, that nearly all the sub- 
sequent editions of this old version of the Psalms, previous 
to 1650 when its use in Scotland was superseded by the 
present version, also contain the tunes. This seems to show, 
that some knowledge of sacred music must have been very 
general ; which may be easily accounted for, as music 
schools existed in different parts of the country. The fol- 
lowing anecdote confirms such a supposition : — James 
Melvill, in his Diary, in 1582, noticing the return of John 
Durie, one of the ministers of Edinburgh, who had incurred 
the displeasure of the Court, says, " Within few days there- 
after, Ihone Durie gat leiue to ga hame to his awin flok of 
Edinbruche ; at whase retourning thair was a great concours 
of the haill town, wha met him at the Nafher Bow ; and, 
going up the streit, with bare heads and loud voices, sang 
to the praise of God, and testifeing of grait joy and conso- 
lation, the 124th Psalm, ' Now Israel may say, and that 
trulie,' &c., till heauin and earth resoundit. This noyes, 
when the Due [of Lennox] being in the town heard, and 
ludgit in the Hiegat [High street], luiked out and saw, 
he raue his barde for anger, and hasted him af the town." 
(Diary, p. 95.) Such a procession, consisting probably of 
some thousand persons singing this tune, (still used in our 
churches as the ' Old 1 24th, ') is characteristic enough of 
the good old Scotish Presbyterians. 

wood's manuscripts — 1366-1578. 

The oldest Manuscripts written in Scotland that have 
yet been discovered containing any specimens of secular 
music, are two volumes out of four, written and noted by 


Thomas Wood, who styles himself Vicar of St Andrews, in 
1566. It is, however, at the end of these volumes, and evi- 
dently written at a subsequent date, that the airs alluded to 
are contained. 

In making an exception by noticing Wood's Manuscripts, 
it is partly because Mr Stenhouse, in his Notes, has more 
than once referred to these volumes, and has fallen into a 
mistake regarding their exact date ; and also, because they 
have not elsewhere been described. It appears that Wood, in 
the year 1566, employed himself in writing four different 
volumes, each containing a distinct part of the music for the 
Psalms, Canticles, and Hymns of the Church used in this • 
country after the Reformation. Wood himself records, that 
this task occupied him four years, and it seems to have been 
a laborious employment, from the care which he took to 
adorn the volumes with rude designs and ornamented capi- 
tals. One of the set, containing the Contra-tenor, is pre- 
served in the University Library of Edinburgh, having 
been presented to the Library by Mr James Browne, in the 
year 1672. Another, the " Bassus," was purchased by the 
late Mr Blackwood, some twenty years ago, and, after his 
death, when part of his stock was disposed off by auction, 
the present Editor was lucky enough to secure it. The fate 
of the two other parts has not been ascertained. 

On the blank leaves of the latter volume, some subse- 
quent possessor has inserted the Basses of a number of 
secular airs, with the first words of the songs. The hand- 
writing is evidently not earlier than 1620 ; yet Mr Sten- 
house refers to this portion of the volume, as if written by 
Wood in 1566. Most of these airs are apparently English, 
and were no doubt taken from some of the printed collec- 
tions of the time. The Christmas Carol, and the Medley 
which Mr S. quotes, must be considered as inserted in this 


MS. nearly half a century after Wood's time ; and they 
are also contained in the second edition of " Cantus, Songs, 
and Fancies," Aberdeen, 1666, 4to. 

Being well acquainted with Wood's volumes, the Editor 
was surprised (in the autumn of 1835), while having the 
privilege of examining the manuscripts preserved in Trinity 
College Library, Dublin, to meet with a small volume in 
4to (F. 5. 13,) lettered " Airs and Sonnets," and bearing 
the following title : — " This is the fyft Buke addit to the 
four Psalme Bukkis, for Songis of four or fyve pairtis, 
meit and apt for musitians to recreat their spirittis, when 
as they shall be overcum with hevines or any kynd of sad- 
nes; not only musitians, but also euin to the ingnorant (sic) 
of a gentle nature hearing shal be comforted, and be mirry 
with us. 1569." 4to. pp. 112. 

Wood's portion of this volume, however, extends only to 
page 33. This is followed by a great variety of " Airs 
and Sonnets " — " which are all notted heir with the Tennor 
or common pairt they ar sung with." The handwriting of 
this portion corresponds with the additional pages at the 
end of the " Bassus," and, indeed, presents the same airs, 
with the advantage of having, in most instances, the words 
of the songs added. 

Wood, who uniformly styles himself Vicar of St Andrews, 
survived probably till the close of the sixteenth century. 
Some additions, at least, in his hand occur, as late as 1584, 
and 1592. It was not an uncommon name, and therefore 
we cannot be certain that he was the same person with 
Thomas Wood, who was admitted minister or rather vicar 
of Carnbee, in Fife, November 7th, 1576. That he was 
only vicar, is probable, for William Laing, in 1582, and 
Andro Huntar, in 1585, appear successively as ministers; 
while Thomas Wood is specially named as vicar of Carn- 


bee, in 1585. Another Thomas Wood was admitted first 
minister of'Dysart, in November 1584. 

These manuscripts contain a few notices of persons dis- 
tinguished during the sixteenth century as musical com- 
posers. It may not be uninteresting to collect such notices 
under one point of view. 

Angus, John, in Dunfermline. In Wood's MS. he is 
usually styled ' gude Angus,' or ' gude and meike Johne 
Angus.' The editor of the Psalms, in 1635, calls him 
Dean John Angus ; and in one place, Wood says, " quod 
Angus in Dumfermling." 

Blackhall, Mr Andrew, According to Wood's au- 
thority, he was a canon in the Abbey of Holyroodhouse, 
before the Reformation. He afterwards became one of the 
Protestant ministers ; and in 1567, and again in 1569, his 
name occurs as minister of Ormiston. He was translated 
before 1576, to the parish of Inveresk or Musselburgh, and 
here he spent the remainder of his life. In October 1 592, 
the Synod of Lothian and Tweeddale, having inquired if 
any of their brethren were " greifit with the greit charge 
of their flock ?" Mr Andro Blackhall declared, that he was 
" greifit with his greit congregation ;" and in October 
1593, the following entry occurs in the Minutes of the 
Synod : — " Anent the desyre of thair brother, Mr Andro 
Blackhall, minister of Mussilburgh, craning, in respect of 
his adge [age] and greitnes of his flock. That the Assem- 
blie wald causs the presbytery of Dalkeyth deall with the 
parochinaris of Mussilburgh for a secund minister to serwe 
in the cure of that kirk, and for sum prouisioun for him. 
The Assemblie, considering the greitnes of the said congre- 
gatioun, as also the adge of thair brother, Ordanis the pres- 
bytrie of Dalkeyth to trawell with the town." 


In reference to the above commission, the Presbytery of 
Dalkeith, in October 1594, reported, that " they have 
bene deilling in that matter ; Quhais declaratioun being 
considerit, the Assemblie ordanis, That thai insist in the 
samin." The subsequent minutes have not been preserved ; 
but it appears from the Books of the Thirds of Benefices, 
in 1601, in 1607, and 1608, that Adam Colt was Black- 
hall's colleague, and that Edward Leyn was reidar at In- 
veresk or Musselburgh, at the same time. Blackball pro- 
bably died about 1610, when he must have attained a very 
advanced age. 

FuTHY, Sir John. The title of Sir denotes that he 
was a priest. A moral song, beginning, ' O God abufe,' 
in four parts, was composed by him, ' baith letter and not,' 
— that is, both the words and notation. " This man (says 
Wood, in the Dublin MS.) was the first organelst that ever 
brought in Scotland the curious new fingefing and playing 
on organs ; and zit is mair nor threscore zeiris since he com 
hame : this is wreatin in I" v'' fourscore & xij. (1592.)" He 
must thus have attained a very advanced age ; for, accord- 
ing to Wood's statement, he had returned before the year 
1532, and, we may presume, that he was then upwards of 
twenty. In Bannatyne's MS., written in 1568, there are 
two poems, signed ' Fethy,' and ' Fethe,' which no doubt 
were by the same person. (Memorials of Geo. Banna- 
tyne, pp. 74 and 76. Edinb. 1830, 4to.) 

Heggie, Francis. See under Peblis, David. 

Johnson, Robert. Wood calls him " Ane Scottis 
preist, borne in Dunse, his name Robert Johnson ; fled for 
accusation of heresy : Thomas Hutson's [Hudson's] father 
knew him weill." In another volume. Wood had added to 
the hymn, ' Dominus in virtute tua letabitur Rex,'' in five 


parts, " quod ane Inglishe man ; and, as I have heard, he 
was blind quhen he set it." This he has erased, and says, 
" This was set in Ingland be ane Seottis preist baneist." 
Ben Jonson, when at Hawthornden, informed Drummond 
that he understood his grandfather had come from Annan- 
: dale to Carlisle ; and that his father was a minister, and 
had fled or was imprisoned for heresy during the reign of 
Queen Mary, he himself being a posthumous son. Query, 
could this Robert Johnson have been related to the great 
Dramatic Poet ? 

Kemp, Andrew. Wood styles him a minister ; but this 
probably was an error, as no such name occurs in the 
Registers of Scotish Ministers at that period ; while it 
appears that Andrew Kemp was appointed by the Magis- 
trates of Aberdeen, Master of their Music School, in the 
year 1570. (Kennedy's Annals of Aberdeen, vol. ii. 
p. 135.) One of the airs contains this memorandum by 
Wood : — " Quod Kemp, and noted (or written) be his 
awin hand, and not myne." 

Lauder, James, was Chaplain of St Catharine's Altar 
in the Collegiate Church of St Giles, Edinburgh, before 
the Reformation. This appears from the following entry 
in the Council Register, January 26 th, 1552-3: — "The 
quhilk day the Provest, Baillies, Counsale, and Dekynes, 
sittand in jugement anent the Supplicatioun given in be 
James Lawder, Prebendar of thair queir, grantis license to 
the said James to pas furth of the realme to the partis of 
Ingland and France, thair to remaine for the space of ane 
year nixt efter the dait hereof, to the effect that he mon 
have and get better eruditioun in musik and playing nor 
he hes ; provyding always that the said James cans ane 
Chaiplain to keep his foundatioun of Sanct Kathyranis altar 


be ane preist quhill the said year be done." In 1567, we 
find a James Lauder holding the office of Exhorter in the 
Church of Logybryde, in Stratherne ; but whether he was 
the same person must be left to conjecture. — In one of 
Wood's volumes is inserted a tune, entitled " My Lord 
Marche Pauen. Set be Jamis Lauder, 1584." 

Peblis, David, styled an " honourable man," and one 
of the Canons of St Andrews before the Reformation, set 
the Canticle, ' Si qiiis diliget me,' in five parts. In the MS. 
Bassus, Wood says, this was " Set be David Pablis in 
four pairtis, in the zeir of God 1530 or thairby ; ane noueice 
Francy Heagy, and wes this Dauid Pablis awin dissyple, 
set the Fyft [part] a lytill before Pinky — [1546], and that 
verray weill." In the Dublin MS., we find, " Quod David 
Pablis, sumtyme ane chanone in the Abbay of Sanctand- 
rous, ane of the principal musitians in all this land, in his 
tyme. This sang was set about the zeir of God I", v"'. 
XXX zeiris." Wood elsewhere mentions that David Peblis 
set in four parts the Psalm, ' Quam multi^ Dominei sunt,' at 
the desire of my Lord of March, in 1576. 

The Editor of the edition of the Psalms, with the music, 
" Printed at Edinburgh by the Heires of Andrew Hai't, 
1635," 8vo, in a prefatory notice, after mentioning the 
pains he had taken to give the Psalm Tunes correctly, in 
all the four parts, has thus mentioned the names of some of 
the composers of Sacred Music in Scotland at the time of 
the Reformation, which corroborates Wood's notices. The 
Editor signs his name E. M. I regret that we should 
be so ignorant respecting this enthusiastic lover of sacred 
melody, as even not to know his name : — 

" I acknowledge sincerely the whole compositions of the parts to 
belong to the primest Musicians that ever this kingdome had, as Deane 
John Angus, Blackhall, Smith, Peebles, Sharp, Black, Buchan, 


and others, famous for their skill in this kind. I would bee most 
unwilling to wrong such Shyning-lights of this Art, by obscuring their 
Names, and arrogating any thing to myselfe, which any wayes might 
derogate from them : For (God is my witnes) I affect not popular 
applause, knowing how little soliditie there is in that shadow-like 
seeming substance, studying to approve myself to God in a good con- 
science ; which testimonie finding in my soul, I contemne all worldly 
approbation, or opprobration. The first copies of these parts were 
doubtlesly right set down by these skilfull Authors, but have been 
wronged and vitiat by unskilfuU copiers thereof, as all things are 
injured by tyme : And heerein consisted a part of my paines, that, 
collecting all the sets I could find on the Psalmes, after painfull tryal 
thereof, I selected the best for this work, according to my simple 

playford's dancing-master — 1657. 
Mr Stenhouse, in the course of his Illustrations to the 
Musical Museum, has repeatedly mentioned this work, and 
has copied from it several Scotish airs. See, in particular, 
pages 129, 316, and 318. At the end of Playford's " Catch 
that catch can; or the Musical Companion," 1667, it is thus 
described in "A Catalogue of late printed Musick- 
books," — " The Dancing- Master ; or a Book of Rules for 
Dancing Country Dances, with the Tunes to each Dance ; 
and other New Dancing Tunes for the Treble- Violin." — 
It passed through several editions, but the first, of 1657, is 
very rare, and is interesting, as perhaps the earliest printed 
work that exhibits several genuine Scotish airs. 


" Cantus, Songs and Fancies. To Thre, Foure, or 
Five partes, both apt for voices and viols. With a briefe 
Introduction of Musick, as is taught in the Musick-Schole 
of Aberdene, by T. D. M^. of Musick. Aberdene, printed 
by lohn Forbes, and are to be sold at his Shop. Anno 
Dom. M,Dc,Lxii." Small oblong 4to — leaves. 

This collection, the earliest printed in Scotland, is un- 


fortunately a set of English tunes, or of tunes composed 
in an English style, rather than of genuine Scotish melo- 
dies. The above title is printed within a rude wood-cut 
border, representing a lady with a lute on one side, and a 
gentleman with a music-book on the other. This cut is 
repeated in the two subsequent impressions. It usually 
passes under the printer's name, as " Forbes's Cantus;" 
although Mr T. D., or Thomas Davidson, may have been 
the editor; and it may be objected that the word " Can- 
tus " is improperly used, as applied to a collection of airs, 
instead of to only one of the Parts. 

Thomas Davidson succeeded his father Patrick Da- 
vidson, as Teacher of the Music- School at Aberdeen, in 
the year 1640. (Kennedy's Annals, vol. ii. p. 135.) — The 
first edition of the " Cantus" is of very great rarity, and 
contains sixty-one songs. The dedication, by Forbes, is in 
such a singular style of bombast, that it may amuse the 
reader to hear of the heavenly melody and the nightingales 
of Bon- Accord, or Aberdeen. 

" Unto the Right Honourable William Gray, L. Provest; Alexander 
Alexander, lohn Scot, lohn Duncan, Charles Robertson, Bailies ; 
Thomas Mitchell, Dean of Gild; lohn Ross, Theasurer ; and 
the rest of the Honourable Councell of the City of Aberdene. 

" Right Honourable, — 
Seeing it hath been the chief Honor and singular Praise of this famous 
City, to have been the Sanctuary of Sciences, the Manse of the Muses, 
and Nurserie of all Artes ; So that under you, and your Honors' 
Predecessors prudent patrocinie, vigilant care, and fatherly inspec- 
tion, so little a Plate of Ground hath yeelded many Plants of renowne, 
who hath flowrished as Trees of delight, both in Church and State, 
through out all the comers of Great Brittaine : Notwithstanding of 
many strange Stormes, dismall Disasters, and malicious Designes ; 
endeavouring to blast the Beautie of Bon- Accoed, to spoile Her of all 
Her Decorements ; and amongst the rest to rob Her of that famous 
Ornament of Vocall and Instrumentall Musick, which allwayes She 


could have claimed, as the proper native and heritable lewell of the 
Place ; In which Her Excellency hath been so eminent, that to have 
been Borne or Bred in Aberdene, hath been sufficient Argument, and 
Testimony, to advance any to the Profession of that Science else- 
where. Yea, How many have come of purpose from the outmost 
partes of this Iland, to hear the cheerfull Psalms and heavenly melo- 
! dy of BoN-AccoRD? till of late, some who had monopolized Crotchets 
I to their own Pates, dauncing to the Pype of these tratarous times, 
f contrare to the express Command of the Almighty, and laudable prac- 
l tise of all Christian Churches in the world, that their Vocal- Worship 
might be consonant to the harsh howling of their Hell-hatched Com- 
j mon- wealths, would levell and astrict the Praises of the Most High • 
I at all times to a Common- Tune. But now, seeing it hath pleased the 
j grand Ruler of Heaven and Earth, with the greatest of Blessings, 
I Our Dread Soveraigne, Charles, by the Grace of God, King of 
I Great Brittaine, France, and Ireland, Defender of the True 
j Apostolieke Faith, &c. ; to bring all things to their ancient Order, put 
an end to these dismall Discords, string the Hearts of Brittaine with 
true Loyalty ; and turne them to their proper Tunes : Elevating and 
Rousing all loyall Spirits to see the royall Harpe blase in the royall 
Scutcheon : I who hath made it my resolute purpose and constant re- 
solution, to saile all winds, and serve up the weake partes which God 
and Nature hath bestowed on me : that so, at least with the Ephesian- 
Bee, I might contribute my little Wax, and sillie Bumb, to the Hyve 
of Bon-Accord's Common-well, that the paines of your Children in 
attaining the first elements of Musick may be lesned, and the Scarr- 
craw of difficultie taken off the Hinges of the School- doore, hath en- 
deavoured with all the clearnesse I can, to make the entry so patent, 
that the feeblest be not afrighted to step in. I shall not weary your 
patience with the commendation of this heasty embrio, seeing it must 
owe its Life and Beeing to Your Honors. It's wealing in the Crad- 
dle ; holding out its Hand for your assistance, suffer it not to perish, 
shine on it with a beninge Aspect ; let it appeare to the World that 
the meanest Schrub in Bon- Accord, can share of your Influence as- 
well as the talest Cedar ; who knowes ? but this humble creeping Ivy, 
if suffered to lay hold on your Favour, and lean on your Goodness, 
may flowrish and winter its greenness with its growth, as the Summer 
Bowre, and Winter Bush of many sweet singing Nightingales: while 
either it answer the expectation of many, or get its stature and perfect 
period, from your Hs. ever acceptable commands. Accept of it as an 
Interlude to your more serious Effaires, and measure not the minde of 
the offerer, by the Leannesse and Leamness of the offering, whose 
Honor and Dignity depends on your gratious acceptance ; which is 
onely able to cover its escapes, attonne its presumption, and shield it 


from all the poysoned Dartes of back-byting envy : So posterity shall 
sing your Praises, and you shall be the soul of that, to which (if we 
shall beleeve divine Plato and his followers) the Vniverse doth owe 
that heavenly soule, by which it is animate, and you and your child- 
ren may make that your recreation in time, which most be the worke 
of all Saints throughout all Eternity: and that Bon-Accoed may re- 
semble Heaven in an harmonious- Concord, and your Honors meet 
with the out-bearing and best blessings of the Almighty, on all your 
Designes and Enterprises, shall be the daily Prayer of 

" Your Honors' most engaged Servant, 


THE ABERDEEN CANTUS, 2d edit. — 1666. 

" Cantus, Songs and Fancies, to three, four, or five Parts, 
both apt for voices and viols. With a brief Introduction to 
Musick, as is taught by Thomas Davidson, in the Musick- 
School of Aberdene. Second Edition, corrected and en- 
larged. Aberdene, printed by John Forbes, and are to be 
sold at his shop. Anno Domini, m.dc.lxvi." Small oblong 
4to. 50 leaves. 

A perfect copy of this edition is very rare. It has on 
the title the same rude wood-cut border as in the first edi- 
tion. The dedication to the Magistrates of 1666 is changed, 
but it is also in a similar strain of bombast. It contains 
only 55 songs ; the six following songs, for some reason, 
not easily to be divined, having been omitted. 

37th. The time of Youth sore I repent. 

42d. Yee Gods of Love looke downe in pity. 

47th. Now, O now, I needs must part. 

55th. Martine said to his Man. 

56th. A Shepherd in a shade. 

60th. Come againe, sweet Love doth thee invite. 

There are added, however, at the end of the volume, the 


celebrated medley, entitled a " Pleugli-Song. Cantus. 
Three voices," beginning — 

My heartly service to you, my Lord, 
I recommend, as should accord ; 
There is an Ox into your Plough, &c. 

And two Carols, or Songs, for three voices, viz. — 

All sons of Adam, &c.. 
Trip and go, hey, &c. 

The following is a portion of the dedication to this second 

" Unto the Right Honble. Gilbert Gray, Lord Provest, &c. &c., and 
to the rest of the Honorable Counsel of the City of Aberdene. 

Right Honorable, — 
A FEW years ago, that I might approve myself no less an obser- 
vant Citizen then a provident Parent, being invited by the desires 
of some, allured by the kindness of others, and encouraged by the 
expectation and good hopes of the usefullness of the thing itself to 
the Place, I did lay down my First-born as a fondling, at the feet of 
your Honorable Bench ; solemnly engaging that, as it received its being 
from BoN-AccoRD, and its growth from your goodness, so it should 
period its stature with your pleasure. This promise hath pressed me, 
that my Press might always bear the impress of your vertues ; and 
express (though in a small type) my thankfulness, according to the 
laudable custom of votaries, in all ages, after a few years' growth, to 
represent the same to your Sanctuary, that it may be confirmed in 

your favour 

And now, seeing it hath pleased Providence, in your 

Wisdom's Persons, to bless the Bench of Bon- Accord with such an 
harmonious Consort, of as many Musitians as Magistrals, that all 
under your Magistracie may descant on your labors, and posteritie sing 
your praises to coming ages ; admit this poor present to your accept- 
ance, its breath and being depends on your brow, being willing to 
receive its sentence from the same, whether it shall be smothered in 
the birth, or view the public under your patrocinie. However, that 
the best blessings and out-bearing of the Almighty may accompany 
your Wisdoms in all your honorable designs, shall be the daily prayer 
of your Honors' own servant, 

" loHN Forbes." 


THE ABERDEEN CANTUSj 3d edit 1682. 

" Cantus, Songs, and Fancies, to three, four, or five 
Parts," &c., ornamented title like the preceding editions— ' 
and a second title as follows : 

"Cantus, Songs, and Fancies, toseverall Musicall Parts, 
both apt for voices and viols. With a brief Introduction 
to Musick, as is taught into the Musick- School of Aber- 
deen. The Third Edition, exactly corrected and enlarged. 
Together also, with severall of the choisest Italian- Songs, 
and New English-Ayres, all in three parts, (viz.) Two 
Treebles and a Bass : most pleasant and delightfull for all 
humours. Aberdeen, printed by John Forbes, Printer 
to the Ancient City of Bon- Accord, Anno Dom. 1682." 
Small oblong 4to, 58 leaves. 

This edition is not uncommon. It contains only fifty-five 
Songs, like the second edition ; but the Plough Song and 
the two Cantus are omitted, to make room for " Severall 
of the choisest Italian Songs, composed by Giovanni Gia- 
eomo Castoldi da Carravaggio : together also, with some 
of the best new English-Ayres, collected from their chiefest 
authors, all in three parts." 

As the Printer still preserved his peculiar style of compli- 
menting the Aberdeen Magistrates, a portion of his dedica- 
tion, and his address to all true lovers of Musick, may be 
quoted. But, in taking leave of this collection, we cannot 
but regret that the publisher should have substituted ' Choice 
Italian-Songs and new English-Ayres,' instead of a series 
of the popular Scotish melodies of his time. 

" Unto the Right Honorable Sir George Skene of Fintray, Lord 
Provest, &c. &c. &c., and to the rest of the Honorable Counsell of 
the City of Aberdeen. 

Right Honorable, — 
Your Honors' servant having had the good opportunity some years 


ago, at two severall occasions, to present your Honors' worthy pre- 
decessors with the patronage of this Musick Book, of which two 
impressions there are few extant ; and he being again (of new) 
invited by the earnest desires of some, yea allured by the kindness 
of others, and encouraged by the expectation and good hopes of 
the usefulness and profitableness of the book itself, not onely to 
this famous city, but also to all lovers of musick within this nation, 
hath (according to his very bound duty) presented your Honors with 
the patronage of this third edition ; especially seeing it hath ever been 
the chief honor and singular praise of this famous city, to be the 
sanctuary of sciences, the manse of the muses, and nurserie of all 
arts ; so that under your (and your Honors' worthy predecessors) 
prudent patrocinie, vigilant care, and fatherly inspection, so little a 
plate of ground hath yielded very many plants of renown, who have 
always flourished, as trees of delight, both in church and state, 
throughout all the corners of Great Brittain ; yea, whose excellency 
hath ever been so eminent, that to have been born or bred in Aber- 
deen, hath been a great argument and ground to procure promotion 
for any, to places of any profession elsewhere : yea, the fame of this 
city for its admirable knowledge in this divine science, and many other 
fine enduements, hath almost overspread whole Europe, witness the 
great confluence of all sorts of persons from each part of the same, 
who, of design have come (much like that of the Queen of Sheba) to 
hear the sweet chearful Psalms, and heavenly melody of famous Bon- 
Accord, whose hearts have been ravished with the harmonious concord 
thereof. If then the Almighty hath bestowed such a grand blessing 
upon the same, sure the heavenly and divine use will much more re- 
dound to our eternall comfort, if with our voices we joyn our hearts, 
when we sing in His holy place 

Courteous Reader, — 

" To all Ingenuous and True Lovers of Musick — The two former 
Impressions of this Musick- Book, finding so generall acceptance, hath 
encouraged me to adventure upon the printing of this Third Edition, 
in which I have not only made it my care to amend some defects 
■which were into the former impressions, but indeed to new mo- 
dell the whole, by adding a considerable number of choise Italian- 
Songs and English- Ay res, all in three parts, (viz.) two treebles 
and a bass, which were never printed with the former Impressions, 
and that for the severall humour of all persons, male and female, old 
and young ; wherefore (I may truly say) this Musick- Book, (as it is 
now published,) for such sweet harmonious songs, hath never been ex- 
tant in this nation. You have also herewith printed, for the encour- 


agement of young beginners in vocall musick, the print of the hand, 
for teaching the Gam thereon, with the scale of the Gam, and parts 
thereof; as also a full exposition of the Gam, and cliefs, moods, de- 
grees, concords, and discords, &c., and that into a plain and brief 
manner, for every one's capacity. I must confess, the work as to the 
musick is not mine, but for printing and publishing hereof, I am still 
ready, and most willing in my generation to improve my talent and 
parts (which the Almighty of his infinite goodness hath been pleased to 
bestow upon me,) both for the good of this City and of my Countrey ; 
therefore, if these my labours prove pleasant and delightfull by your 
favorable acceptance, the same shall incite me very shortly to publish 
abroad, severall other Musicall Songs and Ayres of various kinds, both 
Catches, and Parts- Songs, which are not readily to be found within this 
kingdom, with a briefiF and plain introduction to musick, conform to 
each severall book, all very pleasant for every humour, yea harmful 
to none : and that all my painfull labors may tend for this City and my 
Countrey's good, shall be the hearty prayer and earnest desire of 

" John Forbes." 

d'urfey's collection — 1720. 

" There are many fine Scots airs in the Collection of 
Songs by the well known Tom D' Urfey, mtitled ' Pills to 
purge Melancholy,' published in the year 1720, which 
seem to have suifered very little by their passing through 
the hands of those English Masters who were concerned in 
the correction of that book ; but in the multiplicity of Tunes 
in the Scots style that have been published in subsequent 
collections, it is very difficult to distinguish between the 
ancient and modern." (Hawkins' Hist. vol. iv. p. 6.) — 
The earlier volumes of this well-known collection passed 
through several editions, which was enlarged in 1720, by the 
publication of a sixth volume. 

Thomson's orpheus caledonius — 1725. 
" Orpheus Caledonius, or a collection of the best Scotch 
Songs, set to musick, by W. Thomson. London; engraved 
and printed for the Author, at his house, in Leicester Fields. 


Enter'd at Stationers' Hall, according to Act of Parlia- 
ment." Folio. 

This volume is dedicated to Her Royal Highness the 
Princess of Wales, afterwards Queen Caroline, and con- 
tains fifty songs, engraved on separate folios, followed by 
eight leaves, containing the airs of the songs " for the 
flute." This work may be considered as entitled to the 
distinction of being the first professed collection of Scotish 
Tunes. Although it bears no date, the year usually given 
to it is correct, as the Editor appeared, and entered his work 
in the books at the Stationers' Hall, 5th of January 1725. 

In the index, Thomson affixes a (*) to the seven follow- 
ing Songs, as having been " composed by David Rezzio." 
"TheLassof Patie's Mill."— " Bessie Bell."—" The Bush 
aboon Traquair." — " The Bonny Boatman." — " An' thou 
wert my ain thing." — " Auld Rob Morris" — and " Down 
the Burn, Davie." In republishing this work, as the first 
volume of his Orpheus, in 1733, no such marks are affixed. 


" Orpheus Caledonius : or a Collection of Scots 
Songs, set to musick, by W. Thomson. London ; printed 
for the author, at his house in Leicester- Fields, 1733," 
2 vols. 8vo. 

The license granted by George I. for printing this work, 
to " our trusty and well-beloved William Thomson, of our 
City of London, Gent.," for the term of fourteen years, is 
dated 11th May 1733. Each volume contains fifty Songs. 
The 1st vol., as in the folio edition, is dedicated " To the 
Queen ;" the 2d vol. " To her Grace the Dutchess of 

William Thomson was the son of Daniel Thomson, 

iNTRODUCTioi«r. xliii 

one of the King's Trumpeters, and when a boy made his 
appearance at the grand concert on St Cecilia's day, at 
Edinburgh, in November 1695. — " Daniel Thomson (says 
Mr Tytler in his account of that concert) was one of the 
King's trumpeters, and was said to have understood music, 
and to have been a good performer of the obligato, or solo 
parts, in the trumpet songs of Purcell's Opera of Diocle- 
sian, Bonduca, and other theatrical pieces then exhibited on 
the stage. . . . His son, William Thomson, was early dis- 
tinguished for the sweetness of his voice, and the agreeable 
manner in which he sung a Scots song. He went to Lon- 
don ; and at the time when the Opera, and the compositions 
of Handel, were at their height, the sweet pathetic manner 
of Thomson's singing a Scots song, which he accompanied 
with a thorough bass, became a fashionable entertainment 
at Court, where he often performed." 

" In February 1722, there was a benefifr concert for Mr 
Thomson, the first editor of a collection of Scots tunes in 
England. To this collection, for which there was a very large 
subscription, may be ascribed the subsequent favour of 
these national melodies south of the Tweed. After this 
concert, ' at the desire of several persons of quality,' was 
performed a Scottish Song." — (Burney's Hist. vol. iv. 
p. 647.) 

Hawkins (vol. iv. p. 7) says of Thomson — " The editor 
was not a musician, hut a tradesman^ and the collection is 
accordingly injudicious, and very incorrect." I should think 
he must have been misinformed in making such a statement. 


" Musick for Allan Ramsay's collection of Scots Songs : 
Set by Alexander Stuart, and engraved by R. Cooper, Vol. 
First. Edinburgh ; printed and sold by Allan Ramsay." 


This is a small oblong volume of pp= 156, divided into 
six parts, and contains the music of seventy-one Songs, 
selected from the first volume^of the Tea-Table Miscellany, 
printed in 1724. It is very scarce, and no second volume 
ever appeared. There is a frontispiece to the volume, of a 
lady touching a harpsichord (on which is the name of the 
maker, Fenton), and a gentleman with a violin in his hand. 
Each part has a separate title, — " Musick for the Scots 
Songs in the Tea-Table Miscellany. Part First," &c. 

" Part First — inscrib'd to the Right Honourable Countess 
of Eglintoun," — (Susanna Kennedy. To this lady Ramsay 
dedicated his Gentle Shepherd.) 

" Part Second — inscrib'd to the Right Honourable 
Lady Somerville," — (Anne Bayntun, grand-daughter of the 
witty Earl of Rochester.) 

" Part Third — inscrib'd to the Honourable Lady Mur- 
ray of Stanhope," — (Grizzel Baillie, the lady who was 
the authoress of Memoirs of her Parents. See vol. ii. p. 
*100 of the present work.) 

" Part Fourth — inscrib'd to the Honourable Lady 
Weir" (of Blackwood — Christian Anstruther, afterwards 
Countess of Traquair.) 

" Part Fifth — inscrib'd to Miss Christian Campbell." 

" Part Sixth — inscrib'd to Mrs Young." 


" Signor Lorenzo Bocchi has published an Opera of 
his own composition, by Subscription, containing 12 Sona- 
tas, or Solos, for different instruments, viz. a Violin, Flute, 
Violoncello, Viola de Gamba, and Scots Cantate ; with 
instrumental parts, after the Italian manner, the words by 
Mr Ramsay ; with a thorow Bass for the Harpsichord. 
Subscribers may have their copies at Mr John Steill's any 


time before the first of March ensuing. Any person that 
has not subscribed, may likewise be furnished, there being 
more copies cast off than will serve the Subscribers." — 
Caledonian Mercury, February 22, 1726. 

In Allan Ramsay's Poems, vol. ii. p. 271, is inserted 
" A Scots Cantata, — Music by L, Bocchi." It begins, 
" Blate Johny faintly tald J' Whether Mr John Steill was a 
Music-seller, is uncertain ; but there was advertised for the 
26th of February 1729, a " Sale by Auction, of the haill 
Pictures, Prints, Musick-books, and Musical Instruments 
belonging to Mr John Steill." — {Caled. Mercury^ 


" The Musical Miscellany ; being a Collection of Choice 
Songs, set to the Violin and Flute, by the most eminent 
Masters. ♦' 

The man that hath no musick in himself. 

And is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds, 

Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils. 


Volume First. London, printed by and for John Watts, 
at the Printing-office in Wild Court, near Lincoln's- Inn 
Fields, 1729." 2 vols, small 8vo. 

" The Musical Miscellany ; being a Collection of Choice 
Songs and Lyrick Poems ; with the Basses to each Tune, 
and transpos'd for the Flute, by the most eminent masters. 
Vols. 3 and 4, London, &c., 1730: Vols. 5 and 6, London, 
&c., 1731, small 8vo. 

This collection, forming six volumes, includes several 
Scotish airs and songs, evidently derived from Thomson's 
Orpheus, 1725, or the Tea- Table Miscellany. 


\y craig's collection — 1730. 
" A Collection of the choicest Scots Tunes, adapted for 
the Harpsichord or Spinnet, and within the compass of the 
Voice, Violin, or German Flute. By Adam Craig. Edin- 
burgh, 1730. R. Cooper, fecit. Entered in Stationer's 
Hall." Oblong folio, pp. 45, besides the titles and dedica- 
tion. It is thus dedicated " To the Honourable Lords and 
Gentlemen of the Musical Society of Mary's Chappell :" 
" As you are generous encouragers and great promoters of 
Musick, it is natural for me, on this occasion, to beg your 
patronage, which is my highest ambition. The following 
collection, being the first of the kind, and the nature and 
genuine product of the country, I flatter myself that the 
countenance and protection of so noble a Society will make 
it generally acceptable, and contribute much to the benefit 
of, my Lords and Gentlemen, 

" Your most dutiful and most obedient servant, 

*' Adam Craig." 

Adam Craig was a leading performer at the Concert 
on St Cecilia's Day, in 1695, at Edinburgh. Mr Tytler, 
in the Transactions of the Antiquarian Society, vol. i. 1792, 
published an interesting paper, containing a programme, 
*' The Order of the Instrumental Music for the Feast of 
St Cecilia, 22d November 1695 ;" and giving the names of 
the performers. Mr T. says, " Adam Craig was reckoned 
a good orchestra player on the violin, and teacher of music. 
I remember him as the second violin to M' Gibbon, in the 
Gentleman's Concert." In the " Catalogue of Musick, 
being the complete and curious Collection of the late 
Lord Colville, to be sold by auction, on the 26th day of 
November 1728," 4to, pp. 70, are several manuscript 
articles, as well as printed works, some of which are noted 


as " brought from Italy," or " brought from Rome," 
by Mr Michael Kinkaid. One article in the Catalogue is 
" Mr Adam Craig's Works, in one book, folio MS." 
Robert Lord Colville of Ochiltree, it may be added, was 
a celebrated musical amateur, as well as collector. Lord 
Colville succeeded his father in February 1671, and died 
unmarried 26th of March 1728. He is said to have been 
" a thorough master of Music, and to have understood 
counterpoint well." He played on the Harpsichord and 
Organ; and he was one of the performers at " the Feast of 
St Cecilia," in 1695. 

The God of Musiek joins when Colvil plays. 
And all the Muses dance to Haddington's Essays ; 
The charms are mutual, peircing, and compleat — 
This in his art excells, and that in wit." 

De Foe^s Caledonia, 1706. 

According to Professor Mackie's MS. Obituary, (see 
vol. iv. p. *384,) " Adam Craig, musician," died in October 


Alexander Munro's Collection, is thus quoted by 
Hawkins (Hist, of Music, vol. iv. p. 7) : — 

" About the year 1730, one Alexander Munroe, a native 
of Scotland, then residing at Paris, published a collection 
of the best Scotch Tunes fitted to the German Flute, 
with several divisions and variations ; but the simplicity of 
the airs is lost in the attempts of the author to accommo- 
date them to the style of Italian music." 

Riddell, in the preface to his Border Tunes, also men- 
tions that this collection was printed at Paris ; and that 
its chief excellency is the fine basses that accompany the 


tunes. I regret not having had an opportunity to see this 

i/ AIRS FOR THE FLUTE — 1735. 

" Airs for the Flute, with a thorough Bass for the Harpsi- 
chord." Small oblong 4to, pp. 27. Dedication. — " To the 

Right Honourable the Lady Gairlies (Lady Catharine 
Cochrane.) Madam, — The following airs having been com- 
posed by a Gentleman for your Ladyship's use when you 
began to practice the Flute a Beque, I thought I could not 
chuse a better subject for my First Essay, as an engraver of 
musick, than these airs ; as well because they were made 
for beginners on the Flute and Harpsichord, as that they 
were composed by a gentleman who first put a pencil in my 
hand, and then an engraver ; but chiefly because they were 
originally made for your ladyship's use, which gives me so 
fair a handle to send them into the world under the pro- 
tection of your Ladyship's name. I am, with the greatest 
respect. Madam, 

Your Ladyship's most obedient and most humble servant, 

" Alex. Baillie. 
« Edinburgh, December 1735." 

Who the gentleman was that composed these Airs has 
not been stated. 

JAMES OSWALD — 1735-1742. 
The earliest notices of this eminent collector and com- 
poser of Scotish Melodies, which I have been able to meet 
with, are the following advertisements in the Caledonian 
Mercury. From these it appears that Oswald was origin- 
ally a dancing-master in Dunfermline, and that he after- 
wards came to Edinburgh, where he taught both dancing 
and music. 


" There is to be published by subscription, a Collection of Minuets, 
adapted for the Violin and Bass Viol, with a thorough Bass for the 
Harpsichord or Spinnet — most of them within the compass of the 
Hautboy or German Flute. Composed by James Oswald, Dancing- 
master. Each subscriber to give in two shillings at subscribing, and 
three shillings on receipt of the book. Subscriptions will be taken in 
at Edinburgh, by Mr Cooper, engraver ; and at Dunfermline, by the 
author. 'Tis expected that such as do not incline their names should 
be prefixed, will signify it. The author desires they who have taken 
the trouble to get subscriptions will send the lists to him at Dunferm- 
line, with first occasion. — N. B. The author has by him several Sona- 
tas and Solos, one of which is to be published along with this collec- 
tion : if it is well received, the rest, with some other pieces of Musick, 
may in time be published." — (August 12th, 1734.) 

" Mr Oswald is to publish his book of Musick, against Friday the 
16th of January inst. Therefore, all subscribers for said book, are 
desired to call at Mr Andrew Martin, Bookseller, at his Shop, in the 
Parliament Close ; or at the Author's Lodgings in Skinner's Close 
(where he teaches Dancing, in company with Mr Jones), to receive 
their Copies, upon paying the full Subscription, being three shillings 
to those who have paid the first moiety, and five shillings to those who 
have not." — (January 6th, 1736.) »• 

" Whereas Ma Oswald, musician in Edinburgh, is, at the re- 
quest of several ladies and gentlemen, publishing by subscription a 
Collection of Scots Tunes before he sets out for Italy, which will con- 
sist of above 50 Tunes, many of which were never before printed, and 
all within the compass of the Hautboy and German Flute, with 
Thorough Bass for the Harpsichord and Spinnet; and amongst 
which there are several new Mason Songs, with words for three voices. 
Subscriptions taken in at his lodgings in Carrubber's Close ; at 
Messrs A. Kincaid, G. Hamilton & Co., A. Martin, W. Miller, 

Booksellers; and at the Exchange Cofice- House, Edinburgh N.B. 

The Subscribers will please send in their names, as also those who 
have Subscription Papers, before the 1st of June next, by which time 
the book will be published. The Price to Subscribers is 5s., on de- 
livery of the Book, and to others 6s." — (May 8th, 1740 ; repeated on 
the I5th, 19th, and 22d of the same month.) 

Whether Oswald visited Italy, and how long he remained 
are uncertain ; but London appearing a wider field for his 
exertions than the Seotish Metropolis, he settled there in 
1741 or 1742. See the Epistle in verse, addressed to 



him on his leaving Edinburgh, in vol. iv. p. 405, of the 
present work ; where some further notices respecting him 
are given. 


" A Curious Collection of Scots Tunes, for a Violin, Bass 
Viol, or German Flute, with a thorough Bass for the 
Harpsichord ; as also a Sonata of Scots Tunes, in three 
parts, and some Mason's Songs, with the Words, for three 
voices ; to which is added a number of the most celebrated 
Scots Tunes, set for a Violin or German Flute. By James 
Oswald, Musician in Edinburgh." No date ; oblong folio, 
pp. 42. 

This work is dedicated " To His Grace James Duke of 
Perth ;" and it might be inferred, from the name of James 
Colquhoun, Esq., as " Lord Provost of Edinburgh," ap- 
pearing in a numerous list of subscribers, that it was pub- 
lished either in the year 1738 or 1739. The above ad- 
vertisement proves that it did not appear till June 1740. 

" A Collection of curious Scots Tunes, for a Violin, 
German Flute, or Harpsichord. By Mr James Oswald. 
London ; printed for Charles and Samuel Thompson in St 
Paul's Churchyard." The name of some former publisher 
has been erased. Folio, pp. 46. At the end, " Philips, 

*' A Second Collection of curious Scots Tunes for a Violin 
and German Flute, with a thorough Bass for the Harpsi- 
chord. By Mr James Oswald. London, &c. (as above.)" 
Folio, pp. 47. 

These two collections originally appeared in 1742 ; they 
are included in the list of new publications in the Scots 
Magazine, November 1742. — The following tunes in the 
first part—" The Cock Laird"—" The Black Eagle"— 


<« Peggy, I must love thee" — " The Lowlands of Holland" 

" William's Ghost" — and " The last time I came o'er 

the moor," are ascribed to " David Rizo." The following 
MS. note, however, inserted in a copy of the work, contra- 
dicts this, and claims them as Oswald's compositions. 

" The airs in this volume, with the name of David 
" Rizo affixed, are all Oswald's. I state this on the autho- 
" rity of Mrs Alexander Gumming and my mother — his 
" daughter and sister, (signed) H. O. Weatherley." — "Died 
at Chester le Street, in the county of Durham, in her 80th 
year, Nov. 13, 1821, Mrs Weatherley, relict of the late Mr 
Edward Weatherley of Garden House in the same coun- 
ty, and sister of the late James Oswald, Esq., Chamber 
Composer to his late Majesty, and justly celebrated as 
the author of ' Roslin Castle,' ' Tweedside,' and numerous 
compositions of lasting eminence." 

macfarlane's collections — 1740. 

" A Collection of Scotch Airs, with the latest Variations, 
written for the use of Walter M'Farlan of that ilk. By 
David Young, W. M. in Edinburgh, 1740." MS. 3 vols, 

The Laird of Macfarlane, for whom this collection was 
compiled, was an eminent antiquary, who died in 1 7 . His 
manuscripts having been disposed of after his death, the 
chief portions were acquired for the Advocates' Library. 
The above collection is chiefly curious from the number of 
tunes it contains. They are written with all the care of a 
person, who, from the initials W. M. added to his name, 
we may conclude, was a writing-master : The volumes 
were presented by the Honourable Henry Erskine (brother 
of the Earl of Buchan), to the Society of the Antiquaries 
of Scotland, 23d of July 1782. Unfortunately, the first 



volume was borrowed from the Society many years ago, and 
has never been recovered. The second volume, dated 1740, 
contains pp. 288, and 250 airs. In the third volume, the 
date of which is torn off, there are pp. 288, and 292 airs. 
None of the airs have basses; and to some of them the 
names of the composers are given, viz., Oswald, M' Gib- 
bon, [ Forbes of?] Disblair, and M'Lean. A few also 

have the initials of the compiler, D. Y[oungJ. 

WALSH'S COLLECTION — circa 1740. 

" A Collection of original Scotch Songs, with a thorough 
Bass to each Song, for the Harpsichord. London ; printed 
for and sold by I. Walsh, servant to his Majesty, at the 
Harp and Hoboy, in Katharine Street, in the Strand." Folio. 

This is merely a collection of Songs which had been en- 
graved and sold as single leaves, without any order or ar- 
rangement, and including English imitations of Scotish 
Songs, sung at Vauxhall Gardens, and other places of 
public amusement. 


" Caledonian Country Dances, being a Collection of all 
the celebrated Scotch Country Dances now in vogue, with 
the proper Directions to each Dance, as they are performed 
at Court and public entertainments. For the Violin, Hoboy, 
or German Flute, with their Basses for the .Bass Violin or 
Harpsichord. Engraven in a fair character, and carefully 
corrected. London, printed for, and sold by J. Walsh, 
music printer and instrument maker to His Majesty, at 
the Harp and Hoboy in Catherine Street in the Strand." 
Small oblong 8vo. Eight vols. Many of the dances are 
not Scotish. — There are later impressions of this work. 



" A Collection of Old Scots Tunes, with the Bass for 
Violoncello or Harpsichord, set, and most humbly dedicated 
to the Right Honourable the Lady Erskine, (Lady Char- 
lotte Hope,) by Francis Barsanti. Edinburgh, printed by 
Alexander Baillie, and sold by Messrs Hamilton and Kin- 
caid; price 2s. 6d." Folio, pp. 15. 

This collection was published 14th of January 1742, 
(Caledonian Mercury, and Scots Magazine for January 

Barsanti, a native of Lucca, was born about the year 
1690. He commenced his studies of civil law at Padua, 
but afterwards chose music for his profession, and came to 
England in the year 1714. He continued many years a 
performer at the Opera house ; but at length, with some 
favourable prospects, he settled in Scotland; "and, with 
greater truth than the same is asserted of David Rizzio, he 
may be said to have meliorated the music of that country, 
by collecting and making basses to a great number of the 
most popular Scots Tunes." About the year 1750, Bar- 
santi returned to England, (Hawkins, History of Music, 
vol. iv. p. 37.) — Barsanti had a daughter who made a con- 
siderable figure on the stage. Her portrait is prefixed to 
Bell's edition of Shakspeare's Midsummer Night's Dream. 


" Six Sonatos or Solos for a German flute or violin, 
composed by Willm. M' Gibbon. Edinburgh ; printed by 
R. Cooper for the author. 1740." Oblong folio. 

" A Collection of Scots Tunes, some with Variations for a 
Violin, Hautboy, or German Flute, with a bass for a Violon- 
cello or Harpsichord. By William M'Gibbon. Book 1st. 


— N. B. Where there is double notes, the highest is for 
the flute, and the lowest for the violin. Edinburgh ; printed 
by Richard Cooper. 1742." Oblong folio, pp. 36. 

" A Second Collection, &c. Edinburgh ; printed by 
Richard Cooper, 1746." Oblong folio, pp. 36. 

" A (Third) Collection, &c. Edinburgh ; printed by 
Richard Cooper. 1755. Oblong folio, pp. 36. 

A second edition of the first two collections (in 1755 or 
1756) bears on the title, " Edinburgh ; printed and sold 
by R. Bremner, at the Harp and Hautboy." 

Another edition in 8vo, of the three books, bears " Lon- 
don ; printed for D. Rutherford, in St Martin's Lane," 

An edition of M' Gibbon's Collection, in three books, 
with some additions, by Bremner, is advertised in the Scots 
Magazine, February 1762. There is also an edition, 
" With some additions, by Robert Bremner. London, 
printed and sold at the Music-shop of Robert Bremner, 
opposite Somerset-house." Oblong 4to, pp. 120. It 
contains 4 books. 

William Macgibbon, was " well known and celebrated 
in his time for his great execution on the violin." His 
father, Matthew Macgibbon, was esteemed a good per- 
former on the Hautboy ; and was one of the performers at 
St Cecilia's Concert, in 1695. His son William (according 
to Mr Tytler) " was sent early to London, and studied 
many years under Corbet, then reckoned a great master 
and composer. Corbet's sonatas for two Violins and a 
Bass were esteemed good, and often played as act-tunes in 
the play-house. His scholar William M' Gibbon was for 
many years leader of the orchestra of the Gentlemen's 
Concert at Edinburgh, and was thought to play the music 


of Corelli, Geminiani, and Handel, with great execution 
and judgment. His sets of Scots tunes, with variations 
and basses, are well known." This eminent composer, and 
editor of the above collections of Scotish tunes, between 
1740 and 1755, died at Edinburgh the 3d of October 1756. 
According to the obituary notice in the Scots Magazine, 
1756, p. 470, he bequeathed the whole of his estate and 
effects to the Royal Infirmary. 

Fergusson the poet, in his " Elegy on Scots Music," 
pays the following compliment to Macgibbon. He was 
too young, however, to have had any personal recollection 
of the« musician. 

Macgibbon's gane : ah ! wae's my heart ! 
The man in music maist expert, 
Wha could sweet melody impart. 

And tune the reed, 
Wi' sic a slee and pawky art ; 

But now he's dead, »- 

Ilk carline now may grunt and grane. 
Ilk bonny lassie make great mane. 
Since he's awa', I trow there's nane 

Can fill his stead ; 
The blythest sangster on the plain ! 

Alake, he's dead. 

There is a miniature portrait of Macgibbon introduced, 
as a vignette, in the title-page of " Flores Musicse, or the 
Scots Musician," published by J. Clark, at Edinburgh, in 

L, bremner's collections, &c — 1749. 
" Thirty Scots Songs for a Voice and Harpsichord. The 
music taken from the most genuine sets extant ; the words 
from Allan Ramsay. Price 2s. 6d. Edinburgh; printed 
for, and sold by R. Bremner, at the Harp and Hoboy." 
Folio, pp. 33. " Circa 1749. This is a genuine copy of 


the first impression before Bremner went to London ; it is 
extremely rare. The title page was afterwards altered." — 
(MS. note by Mr Stenhouse.) 

"A Second Set of Scots Songs for a Voice or Harpsi- 
chord. Price 2s. 6d. Edinburgh, printed, &c. (as above.)" 
Folio, pp. 33. 

" Twelve Scots Songs, for a Voice or Guitar, with a 
thorough Bass adapted for that instrument. By Robert 
Bremner. Price Is. 6d. Edinburgh, printed and sold at 
his music-shop," &c. [1760.] Oblong 4to, pp. 18 ; ad- 
vertised in Scots Magazine, May 1760. 

V' "A Collection of Scots Reels or Country Dances, with a 
Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. Price 6s. Lon- 
don, printed and sold by Robert Bremner, at the Harp and 
Hautboy, in the Strand." [1764?] Oblong 4to. 

\^ "A curious Collection of Scots Tunes, with Variations 
for the Violin, and a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
Music, 2s. 6d. Bremner." Advertised in Scots Magazine, 
Aug. 1759. 

iy " The Songs in the Gentle Shepherd, adapted to the 
Guitar. Music Is. 6d. Bremner." Scots Magazine, 
December 1759. 

" Thirty Scots Songs, by Robert Bremner. The words 
by Allan Ramsay. London, printed and sold by R. Brem- 
ner, opposite Somerset House, in the Strand." 

V " The Freemason's Songs, with Choruses, in three and 
four parts, and a Bass for the Organ or Violoncello. Music 
Is. Bremner." Scots Magazine, June, 1759- 

Bremner, as above stated, settled in London. This pro- 
bably was about 1764, and he continued for a number of 
years to carry on an extensive business as a music-seller. 
" Mr Robert Bremner, Music- Printer in the Strand, died 
at Kensington, 12th of May, 1789." 


" The Caledonian Pocket Companion, containing a fa- 
vourite Collection of Scotch Tunes, with Variations for the 
German Flute or Violin. By James Oswald." 

This work was originally published in successive books 
or parts, at " London ; prhited for the Author, and sold at 
his musick shop in St Martin's Churchyard in the Strand." 
This imprint was afterwards altered to " London; printed 
for J. Simpson in Sweeting's Alley," Sec. Later copies bear 
" London ; printed for Straight and Skillern, St Martin's 
Lane ;" but all of them without dates. Oswald himself, on 
completing the 7th part, published them with the general 
title, "The Caledonian Pocket Companion, in seven vo- 
lumes ;" but the entire work extends to 12 parts, usually 
bound in two volumes. 

Among Oswald's miscellaneous compositions are the fol- 
lowing : — 

" Colin's Kisses, set to musick by Mr Oswald. Printed 
in the year 1743." (The Kisses, as appears from a MS. 
note, were written by Robert Dodsley). 4to. 

" Six pastoral Solos for a Violin and Violoncello, with a 
thorough Bass for the Organ or Harpsichord, composed by 
James Oswald. Printed for the author, and sold at his 
music shop in St Martin's Churchyard. Price 5s." Ob- 
long folio, pp. 16. 

" Airs for the Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. 
By James Oswald. Printed for the author, and sold at 
his music shop, St Martin's Churchyard." 4 parts, folio, 
The same engraved frontispiece serves for all the Seasons, 
which were published separately. 

At the end of " The Comic Tunes in Queen Mab, as 
they are performed at the Theatre-Royal in Drury Lane ; set 
for the Violin, German Flute, or Hoboy, with a thorough 


Bass for the Harpsichord, composed by James Oswald," is 
the following notice of an edition of Oswald's works. It 
has no date; but what publication was here meant is 
uncertain : — 

" Some time before Mr Oswald's death, he had fitted 
for the press a correct edition of his works, as well those 
that were known and acknowledged to be his, as tljose that 
were really such, but had formerly been published under 
the names of others, for reasons not difficult to guess. 
There are many excellent composers whose circumstances 
will not permit them to please themselves, by addressing 
their compositions to the heart, instead of the ear only. 
His fine taste, his elegant compositions, his pathetic per- 
formance, were well known and justly admired. 

" In compliance with his own intentions, a genuine edi- 
tion of his works is now presented to the public. For such 
a publication no apology is necessary. That they are his, 
is sufficient to justify their appearance, and recommend 
them to all good judges and true lovers of musick." 

V BURK humoth's AIRS — circa 1760. 
" Twelve Scotch and twelve Irish Airs, with Variations, 
set for the German Flute, Violin, or Harpsichord, by Mr 
Burk Humoth. London ; printed for, and sold by John 
Simpson, at the Bass Viol and Flute, in Sweeting's Alley," 
&c. Royal 8vo, pp. 49. 


" A Sett of Minuets and Marches, inscribed to the Right 
Hon. Lady Catharine Murray, by J[ohn] R[eid], Esq. 
London ; printed and sold by R. Bremner, in the Strand." 
Price 5s. Oblong 4to, pp. 3 1 . This contains, at the end 
of the minuets, three marches, and Athole House, ditto. 


" Six Solos for a German Flute or Violin, with a thorough 
Bass for the Harpsichord, by J[ohn] R[eid], Esq., a mem- 
ber of the Temple of Apollo. London ; printed for J. Os- 
wald, and sold at all the musick shops." Oblong folio. 
" A Second Sett of Six Solos," &c. 

" Captain Reid's Solos." Sold also by Bremner, as ap- 
pears from his catalogue of music. 

The name of General Rbid, in regard to the " Musical 
Museum," is only connected with one air, (according to the 
note at page 202 ;) but as it is likely he will be long and grate- 
fully remembered in this country, a more than casual notice 
in this place may be excused. In his Will, dated at Lon- 
don 19th of April 1803, he styles himself " John Reid of 
Woodstock Street, Oxford Street, in the county of Middle- 
sex, Esquire, General in His Majesty's Army, and Colonel 
of the 88th regiment of foot;" and states, that he was 
" the last representative of an old family iiT Perthshire, 
which on my death will be extinct in the male line." 

General Reid was the son of Robertson, alias Reid of 
Straloch, a property near Strathardel, in Perthshire — a fa- 
mily whose head was anciently designated as Baron Reid. 

He mentions that his birthday was the 13th of February, 
but he omits to say in what year. It must have been about 
1720, or 172 L He was sent to the University of Edin- 
burgh, and we find his name in the list of Professor Steven- 
son's Classes, in 1734 and 1735. How long he continued 
at the University, where he says, " I had my education, 
and passed the pleasantest part of my youth," or what other 
classes he attended is uncertain, as the lists of students at 
that time have only been partially preserved. But this re- 
collection of his earlier days had no doubt its influence, 
when he bequeathed the reversion of his property to the ' 
University. Having embraced a military profession, he 


himself mentions his having been a lieutenant in the Earl 
of Loudon's regiment, raised in the year 1745. 

By his will, General Reid bequeathed the bulk of his 
fortune to the Principal and Professors of the University of 
Edinburgh, with the special provision for endowing a Pro- 
fessorship of Music ; and as his property (to the amount of 
nearly L. 80, 000) has now become available by the death 
of his relations, who had a liferent of the property, we may 
speedily expect this part of his will carried into eJ0Fect ; and 
there can be no doubt that the appointment of a gentleman 
thoroughly acquainted with the history, theory, and prac- 
tice of music, may be the means of raising the character, 
and giving an impetus to the progress, of that science in 
this country, that will tend to perpetuate the name and 
liberality of the founder. General Reid died at his house 
in the Haymarket, London, 6th of February 1807, aged 87. 
He directs in his will, that annually on his birthday, the 13th 
of February, there shall be a concert of music, including a 
full military band, and to perform some specimens of his 
own compositions, to show the style of music that prevailed 
about the middle of the last century. 

Clark's flores MUsiciE — 1773. 

" Flores Musicse, or the Scots Musician, being a general 
Collection of the most celebrated Scots Tunes, Reels, 
Minuets, and Marches. Adapted for the Violin, Hautboy, 
or German Flute, with a Bass for the Violincello or Harpsi- 
chord. Published the 1st June, 1773, by J. Clark, plate 
and seal engraver, printer, &c., first fore stair below the head 
of Forrester's Wynd, Edinburgh." Folio, pp. viii. 8vo. 

From an advertisement in the Scots Magazine, May 1 773, 
this collection was to be published in twenty numbers ; but 
probably no second part ever appeared. The editor's name is 


not mentioned. A small vignette portrait of " W. Macgib- 
bon," is engraved in the centre of the title page. In the pre- 
face, it is stated that "David Rizzio is now generally fixed 
upon as the composer of the best of those delicate songs ; but 
how so gross a falsehood comes to be so universally believed, 
is not easy to determine. That the Scots music is of no older 
a date than two centuries ago, no one, we hope, will venture 
to assert, who is in the least acquainted with the history of 
the kingdom," &c. The editor professes to have " examined 
a great variety of old manuscripts, and endeavoured with the 
utmost accuracy to trace out the errors that have of late 
but too frequently appeared in the editions of Scots tunes," 
and to have " adhered as closely as possible to their primi- 
tive simplicity." The number of tunes given is 22. 


" The favourite Minuets, perform'd at the Fete Cham- 
. petre, given by Lord Stanley at the Oaks, and composed by 
the Right Honourable the Earl of Kelly. Price 2s. London ; 
printed for and sold by William Napier, the corner of Lan- 
caster Court, Strand." Oblong 4to, published 1774 or 5. 
Lady Betty Hamilton, daughter of the Duke of Hamilton, 
was married to Lord Stanley, afterwards Earl of Derby, in 
1774. This fete was given on occasion of their nuptials. 

Some notice of Lord Kelly is given in a subsequent part 
of this work. (See vol. vi. pp. 529 and 532.) He died at 
Brussels, 9th of October 1781, in the fifty-first year of his 

frazer's country dances — 1774. 
" The Dancer's Pocket Companion, being a Collection 
of Forty Scots and English figures of Country Dances, 
with two elegant copperplates, showing all the different 


figures made use of in Scots or English Country Dancing. 
Properly explained, by William Frazer, Dancing-master. 
Edinburgh, printed in the year 1774." 12mo., pp. 16. 
There is, however, no music to the figures. 


" Thirty Scots Songs, adapted for a Voice or Harpsichord. 
The words of Allan Ramsay. Edinburgh. Book 1st, 
price 3s. 6d. Printed and sold by N. Stewart and Co., 
No. 37, South Bridge Street. J. Johnson, sculpt." Folio, 
pp. 31. — The same, book second, price 3s., pp. 33. . Book 
third. Printed and sold by Neil Stewart, at his Shop, 
No. 37, South Bridge Street. J. Johnson, sculpt. Edin- 
burgh, pp. 28. 

L "A New Collection of Scots and English Tunes, adapted 
to the Guitar, with some of the best Songs out of the 
Beggar's Opera, and other curious Ballads, most of them 
within the compass of the common flute. Price Is. 6d. 
Printed and sold by Neil Steuart, at the music-shop oppo- 
site the head of Blackfryers Wynd, Edinburgh." Oblong 
4to, circa 1760. 

" A Collection of the newest and best Minuets, adapted for 
the Violin or German Flute, with a Bass for the Violoncello 
or Harpsichord. Edinburgh ; printed for and sold by Neil 
Steuart, at his music-shop, opposite to the Tron Church." 
Oblong 4to, pp. 94, circa 1770. 

This collection, which is almost entirely Scotish, contains 
some of Lord Kelly's compositions. 

" A Second Collection of Airs and Marches for Two 
Violins, German Flutes, and Hautboys, all of which have 
Basses for the Violoncello or Harpsicord. Edinburgh ; 
printed and Sold by N. Stewart, at his shop, Parliament 


Closs. Where may be had, The first Collection of Marches 
and Airs. Price 6s." 

I/" A Collection of Scots Songs, adapted for a Voice or 
Harpsichord. Edinburgh ; printed and sold by Neil Stew- 
art, at his shop, Parliament Square." Folio, circa 1790, 
pp. 28. 

[^ Dow's MINUETS — circa 1775. 

" Twenty Minuets, and sixteen Reels or Country Dances, 
for the Violin, Harpsichord, or German Flute. Composed by 
Daniel Dow. Edinburgh ; printed for the author, and sold 
at the music-shops, in town and country. Entered at Sta- 
tioners' Hall. Price 2s. 6d." Oblong 4to, pp. 36. Mr 
Sharpe mentions, that his mother told him that Dow was 
a teacher of music, particularly the guitar, when she was 
a young girl. 

Collection of Ancient Scots Music, (Highland Airs,) by 
Daniel Dow, (title-page wanting,) about 1778. Oblong 
folio, pp. 44. 

\^ peacock's airs — circa 1776. 

" Fifty favourite Scotch Airs, for a Violin, German Flute, 
and Violoncello, with a thorough Bass for the Harpsichord. 
Dedicated to the Right Honourable James Earl of Erroll, 
Lord High Constable of Scotland, &c., by Francis Peacock. 
London ; printed for the publisher in Aberdeen, and sold 
by Mrs Johnson in Cheapside ; Thompson & Sons, St 
Paul's Churchyard ; R. Bremner, N. Stewart, in Edin- 
burgh ; and A. Angus in Aberdeen." Folio, pp. 35, 
with Lord Errol's arms engraved on the title page. His 
Lordship died 3d of July 1778. 

The preface contains this silly passage — " No species of 


pastoral music is more distinguished by the applause and 
admiration of all good judges than the songs of David 
Rizzio. We cannot, indeed, certainly distinguish his com- 
positions from those of his imitators, nor can we determine 
whether he formed the musical taste of the Scots, or only 
adapted himself to the musical taste established before his 
time ; but if we may believe tradition, it is to him that the 
Scots are indebted for many of their finest airs ; and custom 
has now affixed his name to this particular mode of musical 
composition." — The book was published by subscription. 

Francis Peacock died on the 26th June 1807, aged 
eighty-four years, as is stated on a marble tablet, erected to 
his memory on the wall of Collison's Aisle, on the north 
side of St Nicholas Church, at Aberdeen. The aisle has 
been lately taken down. There is a notice of him in The 
History of Aberdeen, by Walter Thom, vol. ii. p. 192. 
Aberdeen, 1811. 2 vols. 12mo. Mr Peacock died in 
pretty easy circumstances, leaving a considerable sum to 
the charitable institutions of the town. A lane on the north 
side of the Castlegate is called after him Peacock's Close. 
His dancing-school was in an old house called Pitfoddell's 
lodging, in the Castlegate, which was taken down about 
the year 1800, to make way for the office of the Aberdeen 
Banking Company. 

I am indebted for the above information to Joseph Ro- 
bertson, Esq., F.S.A. Scot.; and for the following com- 
munication to William Dauney, Esq., advocate. 

Francis Peacock, the author of the Collection of Scot- 
ish Tunes published at Aberdeen, was a dancing-master 
in that place, where he died about the year 1806. He was 
well versed in the science of music, and an excellent player 
on the violin and violoncello, upon both of which instru- 


ments he used to perform at the concerts of the Aberdeen 
Musical Society, an institution on the model of the St Ce- 
cilia Hall, and supported by the nobility and gentry of that 
part of the country, among whom were the father of the late 
Duke of Gordon, the grandfather of the present Earl of 
Kintore, Dr Beattie, &c. Dr Beattie himself was a toler- 
able performer on the violoncello. Another gentleman who 
distinguished himself as an amateur of this Society was 
Mr Littleton, a brother of Sir George Littleton, who lived 
for many years in Aberdeen. He had been a barrister, but 
had retired from public life, and selected Aberdeen for his 
residence, as a comparatively secluded part of the world, 
where he might enjoy the amusements of shooting, fishing, 
and music, free from the cares and bustle of society ; and, 
to disconnect himself the more completely from his family, 
he changed his patronymic to Smith, and was usually 
known in that quarter under the name of ' Fis&ing Smith.' 
Some account of him will be found in Mr Pryse Gordon's 
very amusing Memoirs, published a few years ago." 

FOULis's SOLOS — circa 1776. 
" Six Solos for the Violin, with a Bass for a Violoncello or 
Harpsichord. Composed by a Gentleman." Inscribed to the 
Honourable Francis Charteris, Esq. of Amisfield, (after- 
wards Earl of Wemyss.) In a copy that belonged to the 
late Charles Sharpe of Hoddam, Esq., the author's name is 

given as " Foulis." Folio, pp. 26 The above date 1776, 

is perhaps a few years too recent. 


" A Collection of favourite Scots Tunes, with Variations 
for the Violin, and a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
By the late Mr Charles M'Lean and other eminent masters. 


Edinburgh; printed for, and sold by N. Stewart, at bis 
music-shop, Parliament Square." Oblong folio, pp. 37. 

^J m'glashan's COLLECTION— circa 1778. 

" A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord. By Alexander M'Glashan. 
Edinburgh; printed for A. M'Glashan, and sold by Neil 
Stewart, at his music- shop. Parliament Square." Oblong 
folio, pp. 34. 

V' *' A Collection of Scots Measures, Hornpipes, Jigs, AUe- 
mands, Cotillons, and the fashionable Country Dances, 
with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. By Alex- 
ander M'Glashan, Edinburgh; printed for the publisher, 
and sold by Neil Stewart, Parliament Square." Price 5s. 
Oblong folio, pp. 36. 

Alexander M'Glashan, "better known by the appella- 
tion of King M'Glashan, which he acquired from his tall 
stately appearance, and the showy style in which he dressed ; 
and who, besides, was in high estimation as an excellent 
composer of Scottish airs, and an able and spirited leader of 
the fashionable bands." — (Chambers's Diet. vol. ii. p. 477.) 

\r cumming's collection — 1780. 

" A Collection of Strathspey or old Highland Reels. By 
Angus Cumming, at Grantown in Strathspey. 

Come and trip it, as you go 

On the light fantastic toe. 

And in thy right hand lead with thee 

The mountain nymph, sweet Liberty. 


Edinburgh, 1780." Oblong folio, pp. 20. /' :> I 



1/ m'donald's highlan;d airs — 1781. 

" A Collection of Highland Vocal Airs, never hitherto 
published. To which are added a few of the most lively 
Country Dances, or Reels, of the North Highlands and 
Western Isles ; and some specimens of Bagpipe Music. By 
Patrick M'Donald, Minister of Kilmore in Argyleshire. 
Edinburgh ; printed for the publisher, and to be had at the 
Music-shops of Corri and Sutherland, Bridge Street, and 
N. Stewart, Parliament Square." [1781.] Folio, pp. 22 
and 43. Dedicated " To the Noblemen and Gentlemen 
who compose the Highland Society in London." 

The preface states, that " this is the largest collection of 
the Vocal music of the Highlands of Scotland that has ever 
been offered to the public." " Almost the whole of the 
North Highland airs, which form the first and the largest 
division of the following work, were collected by the late Mr 
Joseph M'Donald, the publisher's brother; whose musical 
genius and attainments, as well as the enthusiastic attach- 
ment which he had to the peculiar music of his native 
country, are still remembered by many. He was born in 
Strathnaver, the most northerly district of Scotland, and 
passed the first years of his life under the tuition of his fa- 
ther, who was a minister in that part of the country." He 
afterwards completed his studies at Haddington and Edin- 
burgh, where he had the benefit of professional musical in- 
struction. Previous to his going to the East Indies, in 1760, 
" he wrote out a copy of a number of the vocal airs which 
he had collected, and left it with a sister as a token of 
affection. All his other collections and papers relating to 
Highland music and poetry, he carried along with him. He 
did not live to accomplish his plan (of completing his col- 
lection of Highland airs.) A malignant fever cut him off, 
in the prime of life, before he had been much more than a 


twelvemonth in the country. His premature death will be 
considered, by the lovers of Highland music, as a public 
misfortune ; as, from the collection which he had made, 
from his abilities and zeal, there was reason to expect from 
him a large and correct publication." 

His brother, the Rev. Patrick M'Donald, was settled 
as minister of Kilmore, Presbytery of Lorn, Argyleshire, 
12th of May 1757 ; and, after holding the incumbency for 
the very lengthened period of sixty-eight years, he died 
25th of September 1824. 

Prefixed to this volume is a Dissertation " On the in- 
fluence of Poetry and Music upon the Highlanders." It is 
anonymous, but was written by the Rev. Walter Young 
(afterwards D.D.), who composed the basses. Dr Young, 
who was profoundly skilled in the theory of music, was 
settled as minister of Erskine in Renfrewshire, in 1772, 
and died at an advanced age, 6 th of August 1814. 

t^ NEIL GOW'S REELS — 1784. 

" A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord. By Neil Gow, at Dunkeld, 5s. 
N. Stewart, Edinburgh." — (Scots Magazine, August 1784.) 

Neil Gow, so celebrated as a performer on the violin, 
and also as a composer of Scotish airs, was born in Perth- 
shire on the 22d of March 1727. In the Scots Magazine 
for January 1809, appeared " A brief Biographical Ac- 
count of Neil Gow," which has been attributed to the late 
Rev. Dr Macknight. A fuller account of Neil Gow, with a 
memoir of his son, Nathaniel Gow, and notices of their 
several publications, contributed by Joseph Macgregor, Esq., 
will be found in Chambers's Scottish Biography. Without 
attempting to give any analysis of these accounts, it may 


be sufficient to add, that Neil Gow died at Inver, near 
Dunkeld, on the 1st of March 1807; and his son at Edin- 
burgh, 17th of January 1831. 

I, aird's collection — circa 1784. 
" Selection of Scots, &c. Airs, adapted to the Fife, Vio- 
lin, or German Flute. 3 vols each containing 200 airs. 

Price of each vol. 3s. 6d." Advertised in the title-page of 
Malcolm Macdonald's Strathspey Reels. 

James Aird appears to have been settled in Glasgow, 
and to have carried on an extensive business as a Music- 
seller, during the latter half of the last century. 

^ JOHN riddell's collection — circa 1786. 

" A Collection of Scots Reels, Minuets, &c., for the Violin, 
Harpsichord, or German Flute. Composed by John Riddell, 
in Ayr. The second edition, greatly improved. Entered in 
Stationers' Hall. Glasgow ; printed and sold by James 
Aird, at his music-shop in New Street." Oblong 4to, 
pp. 60. 

Riddell's Scots Reels for Violin or Pianoforte. Published 
by J. Aird, Glasgow, price 5s. Advertised in the title- 
page of Macdonald's Strathspey Reels. 

Burns, referring to the Air, No. cclxxi. in the present 
collection, considered it to be " the happiest composition 
of that bard-born genius, John Riddell, of the family of 
Glencarnock, at Ayr." 

J macdonald's reels— circa 1786. 

" A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord, dedicated to Mrs Baird of 
Newbyth. Composed by Malcolm Macdonald, Glasgow. 


Printed and sold by J. Aird, and by the Author, " &e. No 
date. Oblong 4to, pp. 24. 

/ GORKI'S COLLECTION — circa 1788. 
" A New and Complete Collection of the most favourite 
Scots Songs, including a few English and Irish, with proper 
Graces and Ornaments peculiar to their character ; likewise 
the New Method of Accompaniment of thorough Bass. By 
Sig. Corri. Edinburgh, printed for, and sold by Corri 
and Sutherland." Two thin vols, folio. The title-page 
was probably from a design by D. Allan, and contains a 
portrait of Neil Gow. Folio. 

DoMENico Corri, in 1810, published " The Singer's 
Preceptor, or Corri's Treatise on Vocal Music," in 2 vols, 
folio. To this he prefixed a " Life" of himself, from 
which we learn, that he was born at Rome, 4th of October 
1746. He early showed an inclination for Music, and was 
benefited by the instructions of several eminent masters. 
The Cardinal Portocaro, in whose establishment Corri's 
father was confectioner, in his zeal for the religious orders, 
used all his endeavours to persuade young Corri to study 
for the priesthood ; but,* after a few years, the Cardinal's 
death left him at liberty to follow the natural bent of his 
genius, to which his father was in no way disinclined. 

" At Naples (he says) I lived and boarded with Porpora 
for five years, attended with great expense to my parents, 
and at his death returned again to Rome. The name of 
my preceptor, Porpora, was of great weight and service in 
my introduction to the first society in Rome, among whom 
were then residing many English noblemen and gentlemen, 
to whom I had soon the honour of becoming known ; namely, 
the Dukes of Leeds and Dorset, Messrs Harley, Jones, 


Lighten, Hanbury, Sir William Parsons, &c., &c., and 
particularly my highly esteemed friend Dr Burney. These 
fortunate connexions contributed to place me in a situation 
consonant to my wishes and interest, being appointed to con- 
duct the concert parties which then took place among the 
Roman and English nobility. This period was the pontificate 
of Ganganelli, who was the friend of Prince Charles, the 
Pretender, brother of Cardinal York. That prince frequently 
gave entertainments and concerts to the nobility, the conduct- 
ing of which was also assigned to me. With Prince Charles 
I had, previously to this period, lived two years, during 
which time he had kept entirely private, not seeing any one 
whatever, it being in the reign of the preceding Pope, who 
had refused to acknowledge the title he assumed. In his 
retired life Prince Charles employed his hours in exercise 
and music, of which he was remarkably fond. I usually 
remained alone with him every evening, the Prince playing 
the violoncello and I the harpsichord, also composing to- 
gether little pieces of music ; yet these Ute a ttte's were of a 
sombre cast. The apartment in which we sat was hung 
with old red damask, with two candles only, and on the 
table a pair of loaded pistols, (instruments not at all con- 
genial to my fancy,) which he would often take up, examine, 
and again replace on the table ; yet the manners of this 
prince were always mild, affable, and pleasing." 

Before leaving his native country he married Miss Bac- 
chelli ; and he gives the following account of his coming 
to Edinburgh : — 

" About this time (in 1780) the Musical Society ot 
Edinburgh, wanting a singer and conductor for their con- 
certs, wrote to I'Abbe Grant at Rome, desiring hini to ob- 
tain for them, if possible, either of the two persons men- 
tioned by Dr Burney. At the arrival of this letter, I'Abbe 


Grant found these two persons, namely Miss Bacchelli and 
myself, united in marriage. This circumstance being no 
impediment to the proposal from Edinburgh, on the con- 
trary a favourable occurrence, he immediately concluded 
for us an engagement for three years, at Edinburgh, with a 
handsome provision for our journey. We accordingly left 
Italy about three months after, and arrived at Edinburgh, 
August 1781 ; and here I beg leave to make my most sin- 
cere and grateful acknowledgements for the liberal favour 
and support we received from the noble families of Buc- 
cleuch, Gordon, Hamilton, Lauderdale, Argyle, Athol, 
Elphinstone, Kelly, Elgin, Errol, Haddo, Hopetoun, Mel- 
ville, Haddington, Selkirk, Breadalbane, and Lothian, also 
the Gentlemen Directors of the Musical Society, and the 
Scotch nation in general. The second year of our Edin- 
burgh engagement, proposals were made to me from Lon- 
don by Mr Yates, to compose for the Opera House, and 
by Messrs Bach and Abel to Mrs Corri, to sing at the first 
opening of the Hanover Square Rooms. These proposals 
we were enabled to accept through the kind indulgence of 
the directors of the Edinburgh society. After this season 
in London we again returned to Edinburgh, which engage- 
ment we continued eighteen years." 

During that period, he lived alternately at London and 
Edinburgh; but, unfortunately, he involved himself in diflS- 
Ities by the multiplicity of his affairs, in his management of 
the Theatre, his Pianoforte manufactory, his Musicselling, 
&c. At length, finding it necessary on account of his 
family to settle in London, he thus concludes the sketch of 
his life. 

" I now conclude this short sketch of my professional 
life, adding, that at the age of sixty-four, still blessed with 
good health, I am enabled to pursue my musical career, 


and accustomed avocations of instructing in Vocal Music, 
the Pianoforte, thorough Bass, and Composition. I also 
continue to take young persons as apprentices, to qualify 

them as public professors, or private tutors N. B, Mrs 

Corri also instructs in Vocal and Instrumental Music." 

Domenico Corri, died at Hampstead, 22d of May 1825. 
His younger brother, Natale Corri, as early as the year 
1790, had also settled at Edinburgh as a Teacher of Music 
and Musicseller. He died at Weisbaden, 24th of June 
1822, in the 57th year of his age, 

SHIRREFFS'S AIRS, &C. — 1788. 

t^" The Overture, Airs, Songs, and Duets, in Jamie and 
Bess, by Andrew Shirreffs, A.M., 4s." — (Advertised along 
with the following in the Scots Magazine, May 1788.) 

" Forty Pieces of Original Music, by Andrew Shirreffs, 
A.M., containing his Address to his Crutch, &c., 6s. Sold 
by the Author at Aberdeen : Stewart and Co. Edinburgh." 

For some notice of Shirreffs, see vol. vi. pp. 479 and 525. 

CLARKE'S SONATAS — circa 1790. 

" Two Sonatas for the Piano-Forte or Harpsichord, in 
which are introduced favourite Scotch Airs, composed and 
respectfully dedicated to Mrs Ersldne, juni". of Mar, by 
Stephen Clarke, Organist of the Episcopal Chapel, Edin- 
burgh. Price 5s. Printed for and sold by the author," &c. 
Oblong folio, pp. 16. 

Some account of Stephen Clarke, who harmonized the 
airs in the present collection, is given in the Preface, p. 


^ " A Selection of the most favourite Scots Songs, chiefly 
Pastoral, adapted for the Harpsichord, with an accompani- 



ment for a Violin. By eminent Masters. Respectfully in- 
scribed to Her Grace the Duchess of Gordon. Price 
L.l, 6s. London; printed for William Napier, Musicseller 
to their Majesties, No. 474, Strand." [1790.] Folio. 

This was published by subscription, and contains Mr 
Tytler's dissertation at the beginning. The sets are excel- 
lent. Napier printed a second volume, " A Selection of 
original Scots Songs, in three Parts, the harmony by Haydn. 
Dedicated to H. R. H. the Duchess of York. London," 
&c. [1792.] Folio, pp. 101 — A Third volume was en- 
tered at Stationers' Hall in 1794. 

Campbell's country dances — circa 1790, 
" Campbell's First Book of new and favourite Country 
Dances and Strathspey Reels, for the Harp, Piano-forte, 
and Violin. Printed and sold by Wm. Campbell, No. 8, 
Dean Street, Soho." This collection, in oblong 4to, was 
continued to Book 12th. Price each, 2s. 6d. Some of the 
tunes are marked as composed by W. Campbell. 

bryson's collection — 1791. 
" A curious selection of favourite tunes, with variations. 
To which are added upwards of fifty favourite Irish airs, 
for the German Flute or Violin; with a Bass for the Harp- 
sichord or Violoncello, 5s. J. Bryson." — (Scots Magazine, 
June 1791.) 

THE musical miscellany — 1792. 
I'' " The Edinburgh Musical Miscellany : a Collection of the 
most approved Scotch, English, and Irish Songs, set to 
Music. Selected by D. Sime, Edinburgh. Edinburgh, 
printed for W. Gordon, &c. 1792." Thesame, " Vol. II. 
Edinburgh, printed for John Elder, &c. 1 793," 2 vols. 12mo. 
The Editor speaks of " the professional abilities of the 
Compiler." — David Sime also selected the Songs in 


Haydn's Collection, published by Mr Whyte ; see page 
Ixxx. He was a teacher of Music in Edinburgh, and died 
many years ago. 

" A Select Collection of original Scottish Airs for the 
voice, to each of which are added introductory and conclud- 
ing Symphonies, and accompanyments for the Violin and 
Pianoforte, by Pleyel, with select and characteristic verses, 
by the most admired Scotish Poets, adapted to each air ; 
many of them entirely new. Also suitable English verses 
to such of the Songs as are written in the Scotish dialect. 
Entered at Stationers' Hall. London, printed and sold by 
Preston and Son, at their wholesale warehouse. No. 97, 
Strand, for the Proprietor. First set, price 10s. 6d." Folio. 
The preface dated " Blair Street, Edinburgh, 1st May 
1793." ''^"' '"■ 

This well-known collection was originally published at 
considerable intervals, in books, or half-volumes, each con- 
taining twenty-five Songs ; and has passed through many 
editions. An edition, in 6 volumes, royal 8vo, was pub- 
lished in 1822 ; and another in five volumes folio, has 
appeared while this sheet is at press. 

mackintosh's reels, &c 1793. 

t'''" Sixty-eight new Reels, Strathspeys, and Quick Steps ; 
also some slow Pieces, with variations, for the Violin or 
Pianoforte, with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
Composed by Robert Mackintosh, and dedicated by permis- 
sion to the Hon. Mrs Campbell of Lochnell. Price to sub- 
scribers, 5s. ; non-subscribers, 6s. Printed for the Author." 
(Scots Magazine, April 1793.) 

Mr Stenhouse, in his note at page 479, has given a short 
notice of Mackintosh, who, he says, died at London, in 
February 1807. 


dale's collection, 1794. 

Collection of Scotish Songs, quoted by Mr Stennouse. 
Three books of this Collection were entered at Stationers' 
Hall in 1794. 

riddell's collection — 1794. 

^ "A Collection of Scotch, Galwegian, and Border Tunes, 
for the Violin and Piano- Forte, with a Bass for the Violon- 
cello or Harpsichord. Selected by Robert Riddell of Glen- 
riddell, Esq. Price 7s. Edinburgh ; printed and sold by 
Johnson & Co., Musicsellers, Lawnmarket." Folio, pp. 37. 
Published in 1794, (Scots Magazine, 1st May 1794.) 

y " New Music for the Piano-forte or Harpsichord, com- 
posed by a gentleman, (R. Riddell of Glenriddell ;) consist- 
ing of a Collection of Reels, Minuets, Hornpipes, Marches, 
and two Songs in the old Scotch taste, with variations to 
five favourite tunes. Published by James Johnson, engra- 
ver. Bell's Wynd, Edinburgh." Folio. 

Robert Riddell of Glenriddell, Esq., was much re- 
spected, and obtained some celebrity as an antiquarian, 
although his researches were not very profound, and some 
of his theories fanciful. 

" Mr Riddell was an excellent man, but no musician ; 
as I have been assured by a competent judge, whose par- 
tiality to the author would have made him very sensible of 
any merit his compositions might possess." Mr Sharpe, in 
addition to this note, says in reference to a poem, " The 
Bedesman of Nith side," 1792, 4to, with a vignette, by Cap- 
tain Grose, — " Sir Walter Scott told me that this pro- 
duction puzzled him — it was much too good for the one 
and much too bad for the other." 

Mr Riddell was member of several learned societies, and 
communicated various papers which were inserted in their 


Transactions. He was a particular friend of Captain Grose ; 
and was likewise a neighbour and friend of Burns, who 
honoured his memory by writing a Sonnet on his death, 
which took place at his house at Friar's Carse, near Dum- 
fries, 21st of April 1794. 

i/ ritson's collection — 1794. 

" Scotish Songs, in two volumes. London ; printed for 
J. Johnston in St Paul's Churchyard ; and J. Egerton, 
Whitehall, 1794." 2 vols. 12mo . 

An excellent collection, edited by Joseph Ritson, an 
eminent English antiquary, who has prefixed a very elabo- 
rate " Historical Essay on Scotish Song." The music 
consists of the simple airs, without basses, and is chiefly 
taken from the collections already mentioned, with the 
assistance of William Shield, the well-known English 
Composer, who supplied some original airs. Ritson died 
in September 1803, and Shield in January 1828. 

y URBANi's collection — circa 1794. 

" A Selection of Scots Songs, harmonised and improved, 
with simple and adapted graces. Most respectfully dedi- 
cated to the Right Honourable [Elizabeth DalrympleJ 
the Countess of Balcarras, by Peter Urbani, professor of 
music. Book I. Entered at Stationers' Hall. Price 12s. 
Printed for the author, and sold at his house, foot of Car- 
rubber's Close, and at all the music-shops, Edinburgh ; 
M'Gown's, Glasgow; Longman and Brodrip, London; 
Mrs Rhimes and Mr Lee, Dublin." Folio, pp. 51. Book 
IL is dedicated to Lady Katharine Douglas, daughter of 
the Earl of Selkirk. — Of this Collection, vol. i. (perhaps a 
new edition,) was entered at Stationers' Hall in 1 797 ; vol. 
ii. in 1794 ; and vol. iii. in 1799. 

In vol. iv. p. 318-19, of the present work, Mr Stenhouse 
has given a short notice of Urbani. The following ex- 


tract is from the Obituary in the Scots Magazine, Decem- 
ber 1816. 

" Died lately, in South Cumberland Street, Dublin, aged 
67, after a painful and tedious illness, which he bore with 
Christian resignation, Peter Urbani, professor of music, a 
native of Milan, in Italy, where he obtained the degree of 
Doctor of Music. The celebrated Rontzini and Urbani 
were the only remaining two of that great school of science. 
They finished their studies nearly about the same time, 
quitted their native home together, and arrived in London. 
After some years, Rontzini went to Bath, Urbani to Edin- 
burgh, where he resided for many years with distinguished 
eclat. He has left an aged widow behind, a foreigner, 
now deprived of every thing, even the means of subsist- 


" The Vocal Magazine, containing a Selection of the most 
esteemed English, Scots, and Irish Songs, ancient and 
modern, adapted for the Harpsichord or Violin. Edinburgh; 
printed by C. Stewart & Co., 1797 ;" Vol. II. 1798 ; and 
Vol. III. 1799 ; royal 8vo. Each volume price 10s. 6d. 

The editor of this collection is said to have been James 
Sibbald, bookseller in Edinburgh. It was published in 
Nos. every second month, at Is. 6d. After it had reached 
No. 19, being the first No. of vol. IV., it terminated, with- 
out any cause being assigned. 

A new series of the Vocal Magazine was afterwards 
commenced, including a number of foreign airs. It is also 
in large 8vo. but only a few numbers appeared, containing 
79 airs ; the publication apparently terminating abruptly, 
when its publisher, James Sibbald, died, in the year 1803. 



" A Select Collection of Ancient and Modern Scottish 
Airs, adapted for the Voice, with introductory and conclu- 
ding Symphonies and Accompaniments for the Pianoforte, 
composed by John Ross, Organist, St Paul's, Aberdeen. 
Vol. I. Price 12s. Edinburgh ; printed and sold by John 
Hamilton, No. 24, North Bridge Street, &c." Folio pp. 62. 

" Mr John Ross, late organist of St Paul's Chapel, 
Aberdeen, was born in the town of Newcastle, Northum- 
berland, on the 12th of October 1763. He was called to St 
Paul's when very young ; and arrived in Aberdeen on the 
18th of November 1783. He studied under Mr Handen 
seven years, who recommended him to the managers of St 
Paul's Chapel. He continued to do the duty of organist 
in the above chapel for 53 years. He died at Craigie Park, 
near Aberdeen, on the 28th July 1837, in his 74th year. 
He was married to Miss Tait, eldest daughter of Mr Tait, 
who was 44 years organist of St Paul's, and Mr Barber's 
predecessor when Mr Ross succeeded. On his retiring 
from the duties of St Paul's, he was presented with an ele- 
gant piece of plate, in testimony of esteem, by the congre- 
gation, and also with a splendid edition of Bagster's large 
Bible, by the Rev. John Brown, senior clergyman of St 
Paul's Chapel. Two notices of him appeared in the Aber- 
deen Journal of the 9th August 1837, bearing testimony to 
his private virtues. In the one it is said, ' He possessed 
eminent talents both as a performer and as a composer of 
music ; ' and in the other that he was ' celebrated as a 
musical composer, at once chaste and original in his style.' 
The last was written by the Rev. John Brown of St 
Paul's." — (MS. communication by Joseph Robertson, Esq.) 

, , haydn's collection. 

" A Collection of Scottish Airs, harmonized for the 


Voice or Pianoforte, with introductory and concluding Sym- 
phonies ; and accompaniments for a Violin and Violoncello. 
By Joseph Haydn, Mus. Doct. (Vol. I. and II.) Edin- 
burgh, published by the proprietor, William Whyte, No. 1, 
South St Andrew's Street ; and sold by Clementi and Co. 
26 Cheapside." Folio, two thin volumes,, pp. 67 ; the first 
containing- 40, the second 25 Airs. 

In the advertisement to this Collection, dated ] st March 
1806, the Publisher says, " The Harmonies of the Songs, 
in all existing editions of Scottish Airs, are the productions 
of Composers of various descriptions and degrees of genius 
and talent. The Harmonies of the present are composed 
exclusively by Haydn ; confessedly the first of modern 
masters. From this circumstance it is, that while the 
genius of the composer, indulging in all the varieties of its 
luxuriance, has accommodated itself to the specific charac- 
teristics of each diiferent air, there yet arises a general uni- 
formity, which can hardly fail to give pleasure to the 
classical ear. 

" The selection of the melodies, it is hoped, will be found 
to comprise the most beautiful of the different classes to 
which they belong. The proprietor has, in this respect, to 
acknowledge his obligations to the taste and professional 
abilities of Mr Sime, by whom the selection was made, and 
who has exerted himself to conduct the work to its comple- 
tion, with so much industry and care, as must, in a great 
measure, be considered as a pledge for its accuracy." 


The present work, extending to six parts or volumes, was 
commenced in 1787, and completed in 1803. See the 
Preface to this new edition. 

[ Ixxxi ] 


THOMAS wood's manusckipts — 1566-1578. 
(See page xxvii.) 

On the 21st March 1575-6, Thomas Wod, having ob- 
tained from " ray Lord Regent's Grace, a presentation to 
the vicarage of Sanctandrois, Mr John Wjnrame, Superin- 
tendant of Fyfe, was charged to admit him to the said vicar- 
age." — (Registrum Secreti Sigilli.) 

After the paragraph at p. xxviii., ending " the fate of the 
two other parts has not been ascertained," I might have 
added, that one of these, which belonged to the late Archi- 
bald Constable, Esq., afterwards came into my possession ; 
but having, several years ago, given the loan of it to a 
friend, it was unfortunately lost. The following note was 
written at the foot of one of the pages: — " Thtr four hukki's 
was only pennit he me^ Thomas Wod, Vicar of Sanctandrois., 
[after] four yeiris labours.'''' Like the other volumes, we 
may presume it had also secular airs added at a subsequent 
period ; but the volume happened to be imperfect both at the 
beginning and end. 

Of the Composers of Sacred Music at the period of the 
Reformation, whose names occur in Wood's Manuscripts, as 
detailed at pp. xxx.-xxxiii., some additional particulars have 
since been discovered. 



Angus, John. He was one of the Conventual brethren 
of the Monastery of Dunfermline. Besides some similar 
deeds of a later date, I have one in which his name, " Et 
ego Johannes Anguss," occurs, in a discharge granted by 
George, Commendator of Dunfermline, " with assent and 
consent of the Convent of the samyn chaptourlie convenit," 
to Master Hew Rig and his spouse, " of our landis of Car- 
berry," dated at " our said Abbey, May 22, 1543." After the 
Heforraation, Angus, having joined the Protestants, was ap- 
pointed to one of the livings attached to the Chapel-E.oyal 
of Stirling. On the 24th December 1584, he received the 
Confirmation " of the preceptorie and eleemozinarie of St 
Leonardis in Dunfermling," — " as he has bene thir dyvers 
yeiris bypast preceptor and eleemosinar of the Hospitalle of St 
Leonardis besyd Dunfermling." — (Register of Presentations 
to Benefices). Pensions of £10 each were assigned out of 
the Abbey of Dunfermline, " to his lovit daylie oratouris, 
John Angus (and seven others). Conventual brether of the 
said Abbay of Dunfermling," 22d December 1584, and were 
confirmed 27th May 1587.— (J^*.) He died probably in 1596, 
as, on the 2d March 1596-7, Mr David Drummond, Minister of 
Crieff, was presented " to the personage of Creif, callit Creif 
Secundo^ vacand be deceis of umquhile Deane John Angus, 
last person and possessor thereof." — [Ih.) This presentation, 
it seems, was not confirmed, as the same living was granted, 
on the 9th March 1598-9, to Mr Thomas Gray, " to use and 
exerce of ane musician in His Hienes Chappell-Royall of 
Stirling;" and on the 4th of January 1602, the parsonage 
and vicarage of Kirkcowen (one of the livings attached to 
the Chapel-Royal) was granted to Mr Andrew Lamb, Minis- 
ter of the King's House ; both livings being said to be 
vacant " be deceis of umquhile Deane John Angus, ane of 
the Conventuall brether of the Abbacie of Dunfermling." 


Blackhall, Me Andeew. In Wood's Manuscripts, the 
CI. Psalm, set in five parts, is said to have been composed 
" by Maister Andro Blakehall in Halyrudehous, 1569 (now 
minister of Musselburgh), and giffin in propyne to the Kyng." 

On the 22d July 1582, James the Sixth granted a confir- 
mation " of a pension to Mr Andro Blackhall, Minister, ane 
of the Conventuall brether of the Abbay of Halyrudhous, 
and to Andro Blackhall his son." In October 1593, he 
applied to the Synod of Lothian, craving, in respect of his 
advanced age, and the greatness of the congregation, that a 
Second Minister be provided for the parish. According to 
the following inscription, he was born in 1536, became 
minister of Inveresk or Musselburgh in 1574, and died in 
1609. When Inveresk church was rebuilt in 1805, a large 
slab was built into the wall near the south porch of the 
church, with this inscription : — 

" Here lyes Mr Andrew Blackhall, Pastor of this Church 
35 years. Wlio dyed 31 January 1609, aged 73." His 
son, of the same name, became minister of Aberlady. 

BuCHAN, Andeew. The editor of the Psalms, in 1635, 
has named him among " the prime musicians'" of his age 
connected with the Chapel-Koyal. He was probably related 
to Alexander Buchane, clerk and singer in the King's Col- 
lege within the Castle of Stirling, who obtained a grant of 
£20 yearly, 11th November 1500. — (Privy Seal Register). 
He died before 1584, as " Our Soverane Lord ordanis ane 
letter disponand to Johne Buchane, Maister of the Sang 
Scule of Hadington, all and haill the prebendarie of the 
Chapell Royall of Striveling callit the Parsonage of Dalmel- 
lingtoun, in Kingis Kyle, with all the ruites, &c., vaikand 
be deceis of umquhile Andro Buchan, last possessour thair- 
of." — (Register of Presentations to Benefices, 13 March 


1583-4.) This presentation was superseded by another 
grant of the same parsonage, " vaikand be deceis of umquhile 
Andro Buchan," to John Gib, " ane of the vallettis of his 
Majesteis chalmer," which was confirmed 4th January 

1585-6.— (/6.) 

Hagie, Andrew. On the 29th January 1582-3, the 
vicarage of Martoun was " vacant be deceis of umquhile Sir 
Andro Hagie." — (Register of Presentations to Benefices). 

Heneyson, Edward, " Maister of the Sang Schole of 
Edinburgh, and Prebendare of St Geilis Queir," died on the 
15th of August 1579. — (Register of Confirmed Testaments). 

Peblis, David, " sumtyme ane of the Conventuall brether 
of the Abbay of Sanctandrois," died in December 1579. — 
(Register of Confirmed Testaments.) 

At page xxxiii., in mentioning " E. M,'' the editor of the 
Psahns in Four Parts, published in 1 635, I expressed regret 
" that we should be so ignorant respecting this enthusiastic 
lover of Sacred Melody, as even not to know his name." It 
is some satisfaction, therefore, now to be able to identify 
him with Mr Edward Millar, a Prebendary of the Chapel- 
Royal, who resided in Edinburgh as a teacher of music. 

This appears from the " Register of Presentations to Be- 
nefices," in which we find that " Mr Edward Millar, musi- 
tiane, indwellar in Edinburgh," was presented, in 1634, to 
the parsonage and vicarage of St Mary Kirk of the Lowis. 
The presentation is in the following terms : — 

" Charles R. — Oure Sovei-ane Lord ordaines ane letter 
to be maid under His Hienes Privie Seal in dew forme, 
iiiakand mentioun. That His Maiestie being crediblie in- 


formed of the qiialificatioune and abilitie of Mr Edward 
Millar, musitiane, indwellar in Edinburgh, to undergoe the 
functioune and charge of ane pi'ebendar within His Hienes 
Chappell Eoyall of Stirling, and of the said Mr Edward his 
experience and skill in the airt of Musick, Thairfoir nomi- 
nating and presenting, likeas be the tennour hereof nomi- 
natis and presentis the said Mr Edward Millar, during all 
the dayes of his lyftyme, in and to the personage and vic- 
carage of the kirk and parochine of Sanct Marie Kirk of the 
Lowis, lyand in Atrik Forrest, the whole fruittis, rentis, 
eraolumentis, and deuties of the same as being ane of the 
kirkes belonging to His Hienes said Chappell E,oyall of 
Strivieling and prebendaries of samyn, now vacand in his 
Majesties handis, and at his Hienes presentatioune be depri- 
vatioune of Edward Kellie, last prebendar thairof, &c. Re- 
quyring heirby ane Reverend father in God, Adame Bishope 
of Dunblane, and Deane of the said Chappell Royall, to tak 
tryall of the literature, qualificatioune, lyfe, and conver- 
satioune of the said Mr Edward Millar ; and he being fund 
meitt and abill to use and exerce the chairge and functioune 
of ane prebendare within the said Chappell Royall, to admit 
him thairto ; to tak his aith for acknowledging of his Hienes 
authoritie and prerogative royall, and dew obedience to the 
said Bishope his Ordinar, &c. Gevin at Quhythall, the 15th 
day of February 1634."— (Vol. vii. f. 24.) 

The reference by " E. M." to his brethren of the Chapel- 
Royal leaves no doubt in regard to his identity. It may 
therefore be added, that Millar pursued his studies at the 
University of Edinburgh, where he took the degree of A.M. 
in August 1624. Previously, however, to the above presen- 
tation, he had been connected with the Chapel-Royal. In 
some MS. lists, dated in 1627, the name occurs of " Mr Ed- 
ward Millar, in Blackfriars Wynd, [who] teaches bairns." 


Also of " James Crichtone, blind : Mr Edward Millar stayes 
with him." — (Balcarres Papers, vol. vil.) But how long he 
survived has not been ascertained. 


The original proprietor or compiler of this manuscript was 
probably " Mr John Skene of Halyairds, ane of the Ordlnar 
Clerks of Session," who died in 1640, and v/hose testament 
was confirmed 1st June 1650. See the additional note, 
p. 110. The MS. bears internal evidence of having been 
written between the years 1614 and 1620; and the publica- 
cation by Mr Dauney, referred to, in which his zeal and 
research — aided by his learned friend George Farquhar 
Graham, Esq. — was so signally displayed, appeared in a 
handsome volume, 4to, in 1838. The Editor, William 
Dauney, Esq., was born in Aberdeen in the year 1800. 
He received his early education under Dr Glennie, at Dul- 
wich, near London ; and having completed his studies at the 
University of Edinburgh, he was called to the Scottish Bar 
in 1823. Soon after the publication of his volume of " An- 
cient Scottish Melodies," from the Skene MS., he went to 
Demerara, where he practised successfully as a Barrister, 
and rose to be Solicitor-General in British Guiana, but died 
at Demerara on the 28th of July 1843. 

SIR WILLIAM MURE's LUTE-BOOK, MS. — circa 1625. 

This manuscript is now in my possession. It was given 
to me by Mr Lyle, surgeon in Airth, In place of another 
volume of Mure's, which I happened to purchase at the sale 
of Mr Motherwell's library, but which Mr Lyle was desirous 
to have restored to Mr Andrew Blaikle of Paisley, from 
whom. It appeared, he obtained it, and having lent it to Mr 
Motherwell, it had remained in his possession at the time of 


his lamented decease. I do not know who is now the pos- 
sessor of Mr Blaikie's manuscripts. 

playfoed's dancing-mastee — 1651. 

Although Mr Stenhouse quotes this work as first pub- 
lished in 1657, it is by no means certain that he actually 
made use of that, which is the second edition ; and being a 
very popular work, the successive editions were constantly 
altered, and numerous additions made, so that scarcely any 
two of the editions are found to correspond. In the third 
edition, as announced in " Playford's Musick's Delight," 
1666, there were " an 100 new Tunes added, to be played 
on the Treble Violin." 

The first edition bears the following title : " The English 
Dancing Master : or, Plaine and easie Rules for the Dancing 
of Country Dances, with the Tune to each Dance (small 
engraving, W. Hollar, fecit). London: printed by Thomas 
Harper, and are to be sold by John Playford, at his Shop in 
the Inner Temple near the Church doore." Oblong 4to, 
pp. 104, containing a separate tune on each page. 

Of this volume a copy is preserved in the British Mu- 
seum ; and another, marked as a Museum duplicate for sale, 
was bought for a small sum at Heber's sale, and is now in 
the Britwell Library. The second edition of " The Dancing 
Master, containing 132 New and choice Country Dances," 
was printed in 1657. There is a copy of this edition in the 
Pepysian Library, Cambridge. According to a list of edi- 
tions kindly furnished by Dr E. F. Rimbault, the 3d edition 
appeared in 1665, the 4th in 1670, the 5th in 1675, the 6th 
in 1680, the 7th in 1686, the 8th in 1690, and the 9th in 
1695. In the 10th edition, 1698, and five subsequent editions, 
bearing the respective dates 1700, 1703, 1706, 1711, and 
1713, a Second Part was added. The 16th, 17th, and 18th 


editions, in the years 1716, 1721, and [1725], consist of two 
volumes I and in 1728, Young printed a third volume of the 
" Dancing Master." 

The 17th edition, containing 358 Tunes, the whole revised, 
&c., was published at London, printed by W. Pearson, 
1721, in oblong 8vo. The 18th edition has no date. Of 
this work William Chappell, Esq., editor of the valuable 
" Collection of Ancient English Melodies, with illustrations," 
possesses the 5th edition, 1675 ; the 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th ; 
also the 15th, 16th, and 17th, with the above dates, and the 
18th, without date, but printed in the year 1725. 


" Musick's Delight on the Cithren, restored and refined 
to a more easie and pleasant Manner of Playing than for- 
merly ; And set forth with Lessons A la Mode, being the 
choicest of our late new Ayres, Corants, Sarabands, Tunes, 
and Jiggs. To which is added several New Songs and 
Ayres to Sing to the Cithren. By John Playford, Philo- 
Musicce. London, printed by W. G., and are sold by J. 
Playfoi'd, at his shop in the Temple, 1666." Small oblong 
volume, with an engraved frontispiece, " R. Gaywood, fecit." 
In this volume there are some tunes, with at least Scottish 
titles, such as " Gen. Leshley's March," p. 31 ; " High- 
lander s March," p. 66 ; " Montrosses March," p. 67. 

In a note to the Hon. Roger North's interesting " Me- 
moirs of Musick," Dr Rimbault has given a notice of the 
editions of Playford's popular collections of Catches, Songs, 
and Glees, under the title of the " Musical Companion," 
(p. 109, Lond. 1846, small 4to.) 

" Apollo's Banquet, or the Violin Book, containing New 
Ayres, Theater Tunes, Horn-pipes, Jiggs, and Scotch Tunes. 
The Second part of this Book contains a collection of French 


Dance Tunes, used at Court, and in Dancing-Schools ; as 
several new Brawls, Corants, Bores, Minuets, Gavots, Sara- 
bands, &c., most of which are proper to play on the Recorder 
or Flute, as well as on the Violin. Newly printed, with lai'ge 
additions, price Is. 6d." The same is advertised in Vol. 2d 
of the Theater of Music, published 1685. 

As Playford's name is connected with so many curious 
works on music, it may be noticed that he was born in the 
year 1623. This appears from one of his engraved portraits, 
marked " A.D. 1663, setat. 40." According to the Ashmole 
MS., quoted in Busby's " History of Music" (vol. ii. p. 206), 
Play ford was Clerk of the Temple Church, near the door of 
which his music-shop was situated. His dwelling-house was 
in Arundel Street, in the Strand. In 1659, he styles him- 
self " A faithfull servant to all Lovers of Musick ; "'"' and was 
highly esteemed by most persons of distinction in his time. 
His " Introduction to the Skill of Music" was a very popu- 
lar work. It was first published in 1655, and he lived to 
superintend the 10th edition in 1683, which is enlarged with 
An Introduction to the Art of Descent, in place of Campion's 
treatise under a similar title. Sir John Hawkins, in men- 
tioning Playford, is mistaken when he says, " he lived to near 
the age of fourscore, dying, as it is conjectured, about the year 
1693."— (Hist, of Music, vol. iv. p. 473.) The 11th edition of 
the " Introduction to the Skill of Music" Avas printed for his 
son and successor, Henry Playford, 1687 ; and in this volume 
there is " An Ode on the Death of Mr John Playford." 


" A Collection of Original Scotch-Tunes (full of the High- 
land Humours) for the Violin : Being the first of this kind 
yet Printed : most of them being in the compass of the 
Flute. London : Printed by William Pearson, in Eed- 

'/ J 


Cross Alley in Jewin-street, for Henry Playford, at his shop 
in the Temple-Change, Fleet-street, 1700." Oblong 4to, 
pp. 16. 

Henry Playford, the publisher of this Collection, as above 
mentioned, was the second son of John Playford. The 
eldest son, John Playford, also was a music-seller, " at his 
shop near the Temple Church, 1699." 

As Henry Playford's seems to be the earliest collection in 
a substantive form of Scottish Tunes, and is so rare that no 
second copy is known, a list of the Tunes may be added : — 


Mr Mc.Laine's Scotch-measure, 

Mr Mc.CIauklaine's Scotch-measure. 

I love my Love in seacreit. 

Madam Mc.Keeny's Scotch-measure. 


Keele Cranke. 

The Berkes of Plunketty. 

Good night, and God be with you. 

The Laird of Cockpen's Scotch-mea- 

My Lord Sefoth's Scotch-measure. 

Ginleing Georde. 

The Collier's Lass. 

Sir William Hope's Scotch-measure. 

Stir her up, and hold her ganging. 

Greek's Scotch-measure. 

My Lady Hope's Scotch-measure. 

Peggy vi^as the pretiest Lass in aw 
the Town. 

Bride next. 

The comers of Largo, A reell. 


Dick a Dollis. 

A new Scotch-measure. 

Wappat the Widow my Lady. 

If Love is the cause of my mourning. 

The Berks of Abergelde. 

For old long Gine my Joe. 

Allen Water. 

Madam Sefoth's Scotch-measure. 

Wallis' Humour in Tapping the Ale. 

The Lard of Cockpen's Scotch-mea- 

A New Scotch-measure. 

Widow, gin thou be waking. 

Aways my Heart that we mun sun- 

The Lass of Leving-Stone. 

I fix my Fancy on her, a Round O. 

Quoth the Master to the Man. 

Cosen Cole's Delight. 

Holy Even, a Scotch-measure. 

The Deal stick the Minster. 

ADAM CRAIG. — (Page xlvi.) 

From the Confirmed Testaments, we find that Adam 
Craig, Music Master in Edinburgh, and Ann Montire his 
relict, both died at Boroughmuirhead, near Edinburgh, the 
said Adam in [the date blank, but in October 1741, see p. 
xlvii.], and the said Ann Montire 3d February 1763, leaving 
a daughter, Helen Craig, married to James Craighead, 


Teacher of English in Leith. — (Conf. Test. Commiss. of 
Edinb. 6th March 1766.) 

Walsh's musical miscellany. 

^ " The British Musical Miscellany; or, the Delightful Grove : 
Being a Collection of Celebrated English and Scotch Songs. 
By the best Masters. Set for the Violin, German Flute, the 
Common Flute, and Harpsicord. Vol. 1. Engraven in a 
fair Character, and Carefully Corrected. London : Printed 
for and sold by J. Walsh, Musick printer and Instrument 
Maker to his Majesty, at the Harp and Hoboy in Cathrine 
Street in the Strand." In 6 volumes small 4to, 145 pages 
in each volume, and nearly one-sixth of the collection are 
Scotch airs. 


This collection, noticed at p. xlvii., is curious on account 
of its having been published in France. It is of importance 
only for its scarcity. Mr A. J. Wighton, Dundee, possesses 
a copy, from which the following note was taken. It has 
two title-pages, viz. : (1.) " A Collection of the best Scots 
Tunes, fited to the German Flute, with several Divisions, 
and Variations, by A. Munro. Dumont, sculpsit. At 
Paris." (2.) " Recueil des Meilleurs Airs Ecossois, pour la 
Flute Traversiere, et la Basse. Avec plusieurs Divisions, et 
Variations, par Mr Munro. Grav^ par Dumont. A Paris, 
avec Permission," folio, pp. 45 ; besides the royal warrant 
for printing, dated at Paris, 18th July 1732. It contains 
only the following twelve tunes : — Wallace March, Mary 
Scott, The Bush aboon Traquair, The Boatman, Bonny 
Christy, Nancy's to the Greenwood gane. Bonny Jean, 
Tweedside, Galla Shells, The Souters of Selkirk, Corn Riggs, 
Fy gar rub her o'er wi' strae. 


Thomson's orpheus caledonius — 1733, 

Among the MS. collections of George Chalmers, I find it 
stated, from Dodsley's Receipt Books, that, on the 3d of 
March 1753, Thomson received from Dodsley, the well- 
known London bookseller, the sum of £52, 10s. for the 
copyright, with the plates of his Oiylieus Caledonius. The 
booksellers, Hicks, Millar, and Rivington, it is added, were 
equally concerned in this purchase. Copies of the work 
itself remained in quires, till a comparatively recent period, 
in the warehouse of the Messrs Rivington. 


There was a small treatise, on Thorough Bass, " by A. 
B.," printed in 1717 ; whether it should be ascribed to Alex- 
ander Baillie can only be conjectured. The title is, " An 
Introduction to the Knowledge and Practice of the Thoro' 
Bass. Humbly Inscrib'd to the Right Honourable the 
Lord Colvill. By A. B. Edinburgh : Printed in the 
year M.DCC.XVII." Folio, pp. 11. The dedication copy, 
having an inscription on the title-page, " To my Lord Col- 
vill," is in the possession of James Maidment, Esq., advo- 
cate. In the same volume there is a neatly-wi'itten MS., 
" Institutions of Musick, wherein are sett forth the Prac- 
ticall Principles of Musicall Composition, in Two Parts," 
pp. 22. 


" Twelve Solos or Sonatas for a Violin and Violoncello, 
with a Thorough Bass for the Harpsicord. Dedicated to the 
Honourable the Governour and Members of the Musical 
Society. Composed by Charles Macklean. Opera Prima. 
N.B. — The four last Solos are adapted for the German 


Flute. Edinburgh, printed by R. Cooper for the Author, 
and sold by him and Mr And. Martin, bookseller in the Par- 
liament Closs, 1737." This title, within a narrow engraved 
border, is followed by a list of Subscribers. Folio, pp. 46. 
" A Collection of Favourite Scots Tunes, with Variations 
for the Violin, &c. And a Bass for the Violoncella and 
Harpsichord, by the late Mr Chs. M'Lean, and other Eminent 
Masters. Edinburgh, printed for and sold by N. Stewart, 
at his music shop, opposite the Tron Church. J. Johnson, 
sculpt. Edinr." Oblong folio, pp. 37. Another edition, 
with the imprint slightly varied, is noticed at page Ixv. 

macfarlane's collection — (See page li.) 

Walter Macfarlane, of Macfarlane, in Dumbartonshire, 
was " descended in a direct male line from the old Earls of 
Lennox." An account of the family is contained in Doug- 
las's Baronage of Scotland, pp. 93-97. He was esteemed 
the best genealogist of his time ; and his collections, made 
at great expense, have proved highly useful to antiquaries 
and other persons engaged in historical investigations. He 
married Lady Elizabeth Erskine, daughter of Alexander, 
sixth Earl of Kelly, and died at his house in Canongate, 
Edinburgh, on the 5th of June 1767. 

Oswald's collections. 

1/ " A Collection of Scots Tunes, with Variations, particu- 
larly adapted for the Violin and Harpsicord : Most humbly 
Dedicated to the Right Hon*^'®. the Earl of Bute (arms of 
Lord Bute). By James Oswald. London, printed for the 
Author, at his music shop on the pavement in St Martin's 
Churchyard ; of whom may be had, the Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, in seven volumes, for the German Flute, with 
variety of New Musick printed abroad." Folio, pp. 37. 


In a later edition, the number of Tunes, 43, is added on 
the title ; and the imprint is thus altered, " London, printed 
and sold by J. Bland, at his music warehouse, No. 45 
/^ " A Collection of the best Old Scotch and English Songs 
set for the Voice, with accompaniments and Thorough Bass 
for the Harpsichord : Most humbly Dedicated to Her Eoyal 
Highness the Princess Dowager of Wales, by James Oswald, 
Church Composer to his Majesty. London, printed for 
J. Oswald, and sold at his music shop on the pavement in 
St Martin's Churchyard, where may be had a variety of 
New Music, &c. J. Phillips, sculpt." Folio, pp. 36. 
Oswald's appointment as Church Composer to George the 
Third is dated 31st January 1761 ; the Princess Dowager 
(mother of George the Third) died in 1772. 

It may be noticed, that after the imprint is added, " Where 
may he Jiad^ Two Collections of all the most favourite old 
and new Scotch Tunes, several of them with Variations 
entirely in the Scotch taste, set for the German Flute, Violin, 
or Harpsishord ; in two Books, the First Book now engrav'd 
the size of the Second Book, with addition of several new 
Airs, with Variations. Dedicated to his Koyal Highness the 
Prince of Wales, by Mr James Oswald." 

A Collection of Scottish Airs, &c., wanting the title-page, 
in royal 8vo. This was probably by Oswald, and published 
before the year 1760. It begins on page 1 with Mary 
Scott and the Broom of Cowdenknows ; ending, on page 
48, with Pattie and Peggy. The music consists of the Air 
and the Bass; and may be the First Book above men- 

Sir Walter Scott, in " Redgauntlet," mentioning " the 
favourite air," Roslin Castle (No. viii.), introduces the blind 
fiddler Willie Steenson, who says of it, " Here's another ; 


it's no a Scots tune, but it passes for ane. Oswald made it 
himsell, I reckon — he has cheated mony a ane, but he canna 
cheat Wandering Willie." It is proper, however, to add, 
that Oswald has not claimed this air as his own composition, 
whilst, as Mr Stenhouse has pointed out, it occurs in M'Gib- 
bon's Collection under the name of " The House of Glams." 

m'gibbon's collections — 1 746-1 762, 

The following is a note of the titles of two of the editions 
mentioned at p. liv. : — " A Collection of Scots Tunes, some 
with Variations for a Violin, Hautboy, or German Flute : 
With a Bass for a Violoncello or Harpsichord. By William 
M'Gibbon. Book First. London ; printed for D. Ruther- 
ford, at the Violin and German Flute, in St Martin's Court, 
near Leicester Fields, where may be had all the most favour- 
ite Minuets and Country Dances, likewise Books of Listruc- 
tions for all Listruments," pp. 21. Book II., same title, 
pp. 21. Book III., same title, pp. 21. 


Sae merry as we hare been. 

The bonniest Lass in a' the World, 

and 2 variations. 
The Busli aboon Traquair. 
I love my Love in secret. 
Steer her up, and hand her gaun. 
Polwart on the Green. 
Mary Scot. 

An thou were my ain thing. 
The Highland Laddie. 

Love is the cause of my moaning. 

Mucking of Geordy's Byer. 

The Lass of Patie's Mill. 

I wish my Love were in a myre. 

Peggie, I must love thee. 

Alloa House. 

Leith Wynd. 

If e'er you do well, it's a wonder. 

Green grows the rashes. 

Robin Cushie. 

I'll never leave thee. 

" A Collection of Scots Tunes for the Violin, or German 
Flute, and a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. By 
William M'Gibbon. With some additions by Robert Brem- 
ner. Book I., price Is. 6d. London ; printed and sold at 
the Music shop of Robt. Bremner, opposite Somerset 
House." Oblong 4to. Along with Books II., III., and 
IV., pp. 120. 


The First Book contains 32 Tunes ; the Second, 36 ; the 
Third, 44; and the Fourth, 41 — in all, 153 Tunes or Airs. 

Six Sonatas for two German Flutes, compos'd by Mr 
Wm. M'Gibbon of Edinburgh. London; printed for J. 
Sinapson, in Sweeting's Alley, opposite the East door of the 
Eoyal Exchange. Eoyal 8vo, pp. 22. 


Before leaving Scotland, Barsanti dedicated a set of Six 
Anthems to the Right Hon. Lady Catharine Charteris, 
expressing the obligations he was under to her Ladyship 
and her Noble Family. The title bears, " Sei Antifone 
composte, da Francesco Barsanti. Opera Quinta." No 
date. Folio, pp. 32. 

bremner's collection — 1749-1789. 

Additions to M'Gibbon's Collection. See pp. liv. and xcv. 

The later impressions of the " Thirty Scots Songs," and 
" A Second Set of Scots Songs," with a portrait of Allan 
Ramsay, were published at London. " Printed and sold by 
Preston and Son, at their warehouses, 97 Strand, and Exeter 
Change," price 3s. each. 

" A curious Collection of Scots Tunes, &c. (see p. Ivi.) 
Edinburgh ; printed and sold by R. Bremner, pi'ice 2s. 6d. 
James Read, sculpt, Edinburgh." Oblong folio, pp. 20. 

" Twelve Scots Songs, for a Voice or Guitar, &c. By 
Robert Bremner. London, printed and sold at his Music 
shop in the Strand." (Circa 1785). Oblong 4to, pp. 18. 
This is a later edition of the small work, published in 1760. 
See p. Ivi. 

" A Collection of Scots Reels, &c." (See p. Ivi.) This 
work is an oblong 4to, pp. 96. 
W " A Second Collection of Scots Reels or Country Dances, 


with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord, and proper 
Directions to each Dance. London : Printed by K. Bremner 
in the Strand, and at his Music shop in Edinburgh, &c." 
Oblong 4to, from page 97 to page 112 inclusive. This 
Collection is advertised in the Scots Magazine for April 
1761. He also published a Collection of Minuets in num- 
bers; and No. 4 is advertised along with the above 11th 
and 12th No. of Reels. 

" A Collection of Catches, for Three and Four Voices, by 
different Authors. Price 6 pence. Edinburgh ; printed for 
E,. Bremner, at his Music shop," &c. Oblong 4to, pp. 8. 
i^' ' " Miscellany for the Harpsichord or Spinnet, by E.. 
Bremner, London." 3s., and advertised in Scots Magazine 
for August 1761. Oblong folio, pp. 26. 

" Instructions for the Gruitar, with a Collection of Airs, 
Songs, and Duets, fitted for that Instrument. By Bobert 
Bremner, London. Printed for the Author, and sold at his 
Music-shop, facing Somerset-House in the Strand." Oblong 
4to, pp. 28. Price Is. 6d. 
V/ " A Collection of Airs and Marches, for Two Violins or 
German Flutes. Printed for, and sold by Rob*. Bremner, 
at the sign of the Harp and Hautboy, Edinburgh. Where 
may be had, the Rudiments of Music, price, bound and gilt, 
3s. As also all Sorts of Music and Musical Instruments, at 
the London price." Oblong 4to, pp. 8. Bremner's " Rudi- 
ments of Music" is a small volume, Edinburgh, 1756; a 
second edition, " with considerable additions, printed for the 
Author, and sold at his Music shop," appeared in 1 762 ; and 
a third edition, London, 1763, 12mo. 


" The liand of Cakes. Book the first, containing Six 
Songs set to Musick in the True Scots Taste. To which is 



added, The Tears of Scotland. Loudon ; printed for E.. 
Williams, price Is. T. Kitchen, sculpt." Folio, 8 leaves. 

BURK thumoth's AIRS — circa 1760. 

By a typographical mistake, his name, at p. Iviii., is 
printed " Humoth." 


"Six Solos for a German Flute orViolin, witha thorough 
Bass for the Harpsichord. Inscribed to the Countess of 
Aielsbury, by J. R., Esq., a Member of the Temple of 
Apollo. London, printed for William Randall, successor to 
the late Mr Walsh, in Catharine Street, Strand. Price 3 sh. 
J. Shuter, Sculp. John Shuter." Oblong folio, pp. 17. 

" Three Grand Marches, and Three Quick-steps, for a 
full Military Band, by an Eminent Master [query, General 
Reid?] Price 6s. London, printed for William Napier, 
Musician in Ordinary to his Majesty, &c. Lisle Street, Lei- 
cester Square." Oblong 4to, in separate sheets for the 
different instruments. 

gilson's collection — 1769. 

" Twelve Songs for the Voice and Harpsichord, composed 
by Cornforth Gilson. Edinburgh ; printed for, and sold at 
Mr Gilson's lodgings, and at Mr Bremner's music-shop, 
Edinburgh and London. 1769." Folio, pp. 14. 

Gilson was a teacher of music, and had previously pub- 
lished " Lessons on the Practice of Singing, with an Addi- 
tion of the Church Tunes, in four Parts, and a Collection of 
Hymns, Canons, Airs, and Catches, for the impi'ovement of 
beginners. By Cornforth Gilson, Teacher of Music in Edin- 
burgh. Edinburgh, 1759." 4to, pp. vi. 40. In the Scots 
Magazine, May 1759, it is advertised as published, price 
2s. 6d. In his Introduction he says, " I need not trouble 


the Public with any Preface to a performance of this kind. 
The utility of such performances is now well known ; espe- 
cially since the introduction of the late improvement in 
Church Music, vvhich now so happily prevails in this 

In the Scots Magazine for May 1755, April and Decem- 
ber 1756, various notices are given of the improvement 
which took place in singing in the different Edinburgh con- 
gregations. Bremner, in the second edition of his " E,udi- 
ments of Music," 1762, also makes special reference to such 
improvement in congregational singing. By an Act of the 
Town Council, " for improving the Church Music in this 
City," candidates for the office of " Master of Music" were 
invited to come forward, among whom was Gilson from 
Durham, who, being tried and approved by the Musical 
Society, was elected to the said office in 1756. 

Clark's flores musics — 1773. 

Clark republished, or rather completed, this work, under 
the same title, containing 126 Tunes, on 82 pages, folio. 
The 22 Tunes in the separate Number, mentioned at pp. Ix. 
Ixi., are interspersed. 

EARL OP Kelly's minuets, &c. — 1774. 
Robert Bremner, musician and musicseller in Edinburgh, 
obtained a Royal license for the sole printing and publishing 
of the Earl of Kelly's compositions in music, for the space 
of nineteen years, on the 17th of July 1761. He accord- 
ingly published at that time " Six Overtures in eight parts, 
and a thorough Bass for the Harpsichord, composed by the 
Right Hon. the Earl of Kelly." A list of other composi- 
tions of this very eminent musical genius, with a biogra- 
phical notice, is given in the Introduction of a volume of 
" Minuets, &c., composed by the Right Hon. Thomas Earl 


of Kelly;' Edinburgh, 1836. 4to. Edited by the late 
Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe, Esq., and embellished with an 
engraved title and vignette, and a portrait of Lord Kelly. 

In mentioning this volume, which was printed for private 
distribution, it will not be considered out of place to add, 
that Mr Shaepe, who with a singular amount of antiquarian 
taste, skill, and knowledge joined the accomplishments of a 
musical amateur, and who so cheerfully contributed to the 
Notes and Illustrations in the present collection in 1839, was 
the second son of Charles Sharpe, Esq. of Hoddam, Dumfries- 
shire. He was educated at Christ's Church, Oxford, but 
spent the latter period of his life at Edinbui-gh, where he 
died, October 1851, aged 71, and was interred in the family 
burying-vault, in the churchyard of Hoddam. 

The chief portion of Mr Sharpe's musical collections was 
purchased, after his death, by the Right Hon. Lady John Scott. 


The original copies have no printer or publisher's name, 
but the title is followed by two leaves of letterpress, con- 
taining a long list of upwards of 340 subscribers (of whom 
the half were of the name of Grant), several of them sub- 
scribing for two and four copies of the work. In the Preface 
Cnmming says, '' The Publisher follows the profession of his 
forefathers, who have been for many generations Musicians 
in Strathspey ;" and states that he had spent several years 
in forming this collection. 

In another edition, bearing the following title, the list of 
subscribers and preface are suppressed : — 

" A Collection of Strathspeys, or Old Highland Reels. By 
Angus Cumming, at Grantown in Strathspey. With a Bass 
for the Violoncello, Harpsichord, or Piano Forte. Glasgow, 
printed and sold by James Aii'd, at his music shop in New 


Street. Where may be had, a Collection of Scots Reels, 
Minuets, &c. bj John Ridded, Musician in Ayr, price 5s. 
A Sellection of Favourite Scots, English, Irish, and Foreign 
Airs, Adapted to the Fife, Violin, or German Flute, in a 
Neat Octavo Voll., price 3s. Clagget's 6 Easy Duets for 2 
Ger. Flutes or Violins. Op. 6th, 3 sh. Favourite Scots 
Medleys, each 6d. W^ith great variety of Music or Musical 
Instruments at the London prices. Musical Instruments 
repaired or lent out per month or quarter. Graved by J. 
Johnson, Edinburgh." Oblong folio, pp. 20. 


" A Collection of Ancient Scots Music, for the Violin, 
Harpsicord, or German Flute, never before printed, consist- 
ing of Ports, Salutations, Marches or Pibrachs, &c. By 
Daniel Dow. Edinburgh : Printed for and sold by the Pub- 
lisher, and to be had at the Music shops in Town and Coun- 
try. Price 10s. Gd." James Johnson, sculpt. Edinr. Oblong 
folio, pp. 46, with list of subscribers, and dedication to the 
Duchess of Athole. 
1/. " Thirty-seven New Reels and Strathspeys, for the Violin, 
Harpsichord, Pianoforte, or German Flute. Composed by 
Daniel Dow. Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 2s. Edinburgh : 
Printed and sold by N. Stewart, at his music shop. Parlia- 
ment Square, where may be had, Scots Songs with Sym- 
phonies; each Book 2s. 6d." (J. Johnston, sculpt.) Oblong 
4to, pp. 26. Conc^ '7?t>- 

JOHN RiDDELL, AYR — circa 1776. 

" A Collection of Scots Reels, or Country Dances and 
Minuets, with two particular Slow Tunes, with a Bass for 
the Violin, Violincello, or Harpsichord. Composed by John 
Riddle at Ayr, and Sold by Himself there ; likewise by Mr 


Rob'. Bremner in Ediu'"., also at his shope at the Harp and 
Hautboy, opposite Sumerset House, in the Strand, London. 
Price 5s. EnterM Stationers Hall. 

Wm. Edward, Sculp*. > -m. ,, 

-r^ r^ T^ • . >-Edinr. 

Dun. Cameron rrints it. ) 
Oblong 4to, pp. 45. This is the first edition of the Collec- 
tion described at page Ixix. 

According to a note by the Editor of the Ballads and 
Songs of Ayrshire, " old John Eiddell" had a small salary 
from some gentlemen of note in the county, and had several 
pupils who obtained local celebrity. In stating that " Riddell 
was blind, it is believed, from infancy," (p. v.), this probably 
is not correct. 

anonymoUkS collection — circa 1776. ..• 

" A Collection of Airs, &c. for the Violin or German Flute, 
with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord, taken from 
the best Masters, and published in Six numbers. Each num- 
ber consists of sixteen pages, price One Shilling. To be had 
at the shop of Tho^ Phinn, Engraver, Luckenbooths. 

" N.B. — As the Person who has collected the above Num- 
bers has avoided inserting any one Air found in other Col- 
lections of the kind, and has been carefull of his choice, only 
adding a few Scots tunes in his own taste, with some Airs 
of his Composition, it is hoped this Collection will meet with 
a favourable reception." 

Oblong 4to. Query, by General R.eid ? The copy I have 
extends only to page 48, or equal to three numbers ; and I 
cannot ascertain whether it was ever completed. 

Stewart's collection of catches — 1780. 
" A Collection of Catches, Canons, Glees, Duettos, &c. 
Selected from the works of the most eminent Composers, 


antlent and modern. Edinburgh ; printed for N. Stewart, 

and sold at his music shop, Parliament Close. Where may 

be had, 

i/' 3 books of Scots Songs, with Symphonies, each 2s. 6d. 
A New Collection of Strathspey Reels, 5s. 
M'Lean's Scots Tunes, with Variations, 5s," 
In oblong 4to, pp. 112. The dedication, " To the Catch 

Club, instituted at Edinburgh June 1771," by the publisher, 

N. Stewart, is dated Edinburgh, June 1780. 


" A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord, most humbly dedicated to her 
grace, the Dutchess of Athole. By Niel Gow, at Dunkeld. 
Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and sold by Corri and 
Co., Music sellers to Her Majesty." Folio, pp. 36. 

" A Second Collection, &c. Dedicated (by permission) to 
the Noblemen and Gentlemen of the Caledonian Hunt." 
Edinburgh, printed for Corri and Sutherland, &c. Pp. 36. 

" A Third Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c,, for the 
Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello. Dedicated to the Most 
Noble, the Marchioness of Tweeddale. By Niel Gow, at 
Dunkeld. Price 6s. Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and 
to be had of him, at Dunkeld ; Nath. Gow, Baillie Fyife's 
Close, Edinburgh ; John and Andrew Gow, No. 60 King^s 
Street, Golden Squai'e, London." Pp. 36. 

William, John, and Andrew Gow, all sons of Niel Gow, 
gave early indications of musical talent, but were eclipsed 
by their younger brother Nathaniel, who was born at Inver, 
28th May 1766. John and Andrew, it appears from the 
above title, had settled in London as music-sellers ; and it 
will be seen, from some of these publications, that Nathaniel 
also carrie^i on business in Edinburgh for some years. An- 


Other edition of this Third Collection has " Edinburgh, 
printed and sold by N. and M. Stewart, Music sellers, 37 
South Bridge, &c. Where may be had M'Glashan's First 
and Third Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c." 

" A Fourth Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c., for the 
Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello, dedicated to the Right 
Honourable the Earl of Eglintown, by Niel Gow, at Dun- 
keld. Entered at Stationers' Hall. Price 6s. Edinburgh, 
printed by Gow and Shepherd, Music sellers. No. 41 North 
Bridge Street ; to be had of the author at Dunkeld, and 
John Gow, No. 31 Carnaby Street, Golden Square, London, 
where all the author's Reels may be had. J. Johnson, 
sculpt., Edinburgh." Folio, pp. 36. On the last page is 
this intimation, " And [I] add, for the information of those 
who wish to possess themselves of my Reels, or what is 
called Gow's Reels, that the books I have published are 
five in number, and are as follows : — 

A Collection (my first) of Strathspey Reels, dedicated to the Dutchess of 
Athole. Price 6s. 

A Second Collection of Strathspey Reels, dedicated to the Caledonian 
Hunt. 6s. 

A Third Collection of Strathspey Reels, dedicated to the Marchioness of 
Tweeddale. 6s. 

A Complete Repository of the Original Scotch Slow Strathspeys and 
Dances, dedicated to the Dutchess of Gordon. 7s. 6d. 

And the Fourth Collection, dedicated to the Earl of Eglintown. 6s." 

Another edition of this Fourth Collection has on the title, 
" Edinburgh, printed by Gow and Sutherland, 16 Princes 
Street." U'V ./ 

A Fifth Collection, by Neil Gow and Sons, " Edinburgh, 
printed for Gow and Sutherland," appeared subsequently to 
1808. The date is ascertained by the reference on the title- 
page to Ckomek's Reliques of Bums ^ which was published in 
the year 1808. 

" Sixth Collection of Strathspeys, Reels, &c. Dedicated 


to the Marchioness of Huntly." Price 8s. Published 1822. 
Pp. 36. 

" Part Second of the Complete Repository of Original 
Scots Slow Tunes, Strathspeys, and Dances. Dedicated to 
the Duchess of Buccleuch."" Price 8s. Pp. 88. 

" Part Third of Ditto. Dedicated to the Countess of Lou- 
doun and Moira." Price 8s. Pp. 38. 

" Part Fourth of Ditto. Dedicated to the Nobility and 
Gentry of Scotland." Price 8s. Pp. 38. 

Being in all Six Collections and Four Repositories, pub- 
lished by Neil Gow & Sons. 

" The Beauties of Neil Gow, being a Selection of the most 
favourite Tunes from his First, Second, and Third Collec- 
tions of Strathspeys, Reels, and Jigs, chiefly comprising the 
Compositions of Neil Gow & Sons. (The Dances arranged 
as Medleys). All of which are adapted for the Harp, Piano- 
forte, Violin, and Violoncello. Respectfully dedicated to the 
Noblemen and Gentlemen of the Caledonian Hunt, by Na- 
thaniel Gow. Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 6s. Edinburgh : 
Published and sold by Alex. Robertson, 39 Princes Street," 
&c. Part 1st, pp. 38; part 2d, pp. 38; part 3d, pp. 38 — 
all folio. 

" The Vocal Melodies of Scotland. Dedicated to his Grace 
the Duke of Buccleugh and Queensberry. Arranged for the 
Pianoforte, or Harp, Violin, and Violoncello, by Nathaniel 
Gow. Entd. Stat. Hall. Edinburgh : Printed and sold by 
A. Robertson, 39 Princes Street." In three parts, at 8s. 
each, and 36 pages each. 
^. , . " The Ancient Curious Collection of Scotland, consisting 
of Genuine Scotch Tunes, with their Original Variations, 
with Basses throughout for the Pianoforte, or Harp, Violin, 
and Violoncello. Dedicated to Sir Walter Scott, Bart,, by 
Nathaniel Gow. Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 8s. Edinburgh : 


Published by Robertsons, 39 Princes Street." 1823. Folio, 
pp. 36. 

"A Select Collection of Original Dances, Waltzes, Marches, 
Minuets, and Airs. Eespectfully dedicated to the Most 
Noble the Marchioness of Queensberry. Many of which are 
composed, and the whole arranged for the Pianoforte and 
Harp, by Nath. Gow. Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 8s. Edin- 
burgh : Published by Alexander Robertson & Co., 39 Princes 
Street." Folio, pp. 36. 

" A Collection of Airs, Reels, and Strathspeys, being the 
Posthumous Compositions of the Late Neil Gow, Junr. Ar- 
ranged for the Pianoforte, Harp, Violin, and Violoncello. 
Gratefully dedicated to the Right Honourable the Earl of 
Dalhousie, by his much obliged servant, Nathaniel Gow. 
Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 6s. Edinburgh: Published and 
sold by Alex. Robertson & Co,, 39 Princes Street." Folio, 
pp. 22. Published 1849. There is a Memoir of Neil and 
Nathaniel that accompanies the work. 

The Works of Neil Gow and Sons, and Nathaniel Gow, 
consist of — 

6 Collections of Reels, &c. 

4 Parts of the Repositories. 

3 Parts of the Beauties of Neil Gow. 

3 Parts of the Vocal Melodies of Scotland. 

1 Ancient Curious Collection of Scotland. 

1 Select Collection of Original Dances. 

1 The Posthumous Compositions of Neil Gow, jun. 
In all 19 Parts, goes under the name of Neil Gow & Sons 

The following Collections were published by Nathaniel 
Gow towards the close of last century : — 

" A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord, containing the most approved 


Old and the most fashionable New Reels, some of which are 
composed, and others with additions, by Nathl. Gow. To 
which are added, a few favourite Irish Airs. Price 6s. 
Printed by Corri Dussek & Co., Music-sellers to the Royal 
Family, No. 69 Dean Street, Soho, No. 28 Haymarket, Lon- 
don ; No. 8 South St Andrew Street, and 37 North Bridge, 
Edinburgh. N.B. — All the original tunes in this Collection 
are entered in Stationers'' Hall, according to act of Parlia- 
ment. J. Johnson, sculpt," Folio, pp. 36. 

" New Strathspey Reels for the Pianoforte, Violin, and 
Violoncello. Composed by a Gentleman, and given with 
permission to be published by Nathl. Gow. Price 5s. Edin- 
burgh : Printed and sold by N. Stewart & Co." Folio, pp. 
24. (On Mr Wighton's copy is written " Composed by the 
Earl of Eglintoun.") 

" A Collection of much-admired Marches, Quick-steps, 
Airs, &c. Composed by a Lady, and very generously given 
(with permission to be published) to her much obliged and very 
humble servant, Nath. Gow. Price 2s. 6d. Entd. Stat. Hall. 
Edinburgh : Printed and sold by N. Stewart & Co., Music- 
sellers, No. 37 South Bridge, where may be had all the dif- 
ferent Collections of Reels, by Gow, M'Glashan, &c." John- 
son, sculpt. Folio. 

" A Collection of entirely Original Strathspey Reels, 
Marches, Quick-steps, &c. for the Pianoforte, Violin, German 
Flute, &c. &c., by Ladies resident in a remote part of the 
Highlands of Scotland. N.B. — Corrected by Nath. Gow. 
Pr. 5s. To be had of Gow & Shepherd, and of the principal 
Music-sellers in Town and Country." Johnson, sculpt. Folio, 
pp. 24. 

" A Complete Collection, of Originall German Valtz, for 
the Pianoforte or Violin and Violoncello, with a Second 
Violin Accompaniment. Dedicated to Lady Charlotte Camp- 


bell, by Nath. Gow. Price 6s. Entered at Stationers' Hall. 
Edinr., printed for Gow & Shepherd, No. 16 Princes Street. 
Where may be had, Petrie's New Reels, Miss Sitwell's Reel, 
and every Foreign and London publication, &c. &c. J. 
Johnson, sculpt. N.B. — A Second Collection will be pub- 
lished soon." Folio, pp. 24. 

" A Complete Repository of Old and New Scotch Strath- 
spey's, Reels, and Jigs, adapted for the German Flute. 
Edinburgh : Printed and sold by Goav & Shepherd, No. 40 
Prince's Street." Oblong 4to, pp. 48, including two pages 
with Index. Price 5s. 

Book Second, same title-page, pp. 50. 5s. 


The Collection, mentioned at the foot of page Ixix., in 
other copies has this imprint: "Edinburgh, printed for the 
Author, and sold by all the Music shops in Town and 
Country. Price 2s. 6d." It was followed by three others, 
viz. : — 

" A Second Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c. With a 
Bass, &c. Dedicated to the Right Hon. the Earl of Bread- 
albane. By Malcolm M'Donald, corrected by Niel Gow, at 
Dunkeld. Edinburgh, printed by Corri and Sutherland, 
where may be had Gow's First and Second Set of Reels." 
Folio, pp. 13. 

" A Third Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c. (same as 
first and second collections). Dedicated by permission to 
Miss Drummond of Perth, by Malcolm McDonald, at Dun- 
keld. Price 2s, 6d. Edinburgh, printed for the author, and 
sold by Corri and Co., Johnson and Co., R. Bryson, and all 
the Music sellers in Town and Country. J. Johnson, sculp<^." 
Some copies have in the title, " Edinburgh, printed for J. 
Brysson, &c. Price 3s." Folio, pp. 12. 


" A Fourth Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c. (same as 
above). Dedicated to the Right Honble. the Countess of 
Breadalbane, by Malcolm M'Donald, at Dunkeld. Price 3s. 
Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and to be had at Gow & 
Shepherd's." Folio, pp. 13. 


One of Corri's most important publications is, " A Select 
Collection of the most admired Songs, Duets, &c., from 
Operas of the highest esteem, and from other works, in 
Italian, English, French, Scotch, Irish, &c. In Three Books. 
By Dominico Corri. Edinburgh, printed for John Corri, sold 
by him, and by C. Elliot, Parliament Square." 3 vols, folio. 

" A Select Collection of Forty of the most favorite Scots 
Songs. With introductory and concluding symphonies, pro- 
per graces peculiar to their character, and accompaniments 
for the Pianoforte. By D. & N. Corri. The fourth Edition, 
with additions and improvements, price 7s. 6d., folio. Edinr., 
printed and sold by N. Corri, &c., at his Concert Room, head 
ofLelth Walk." 

m'intosh's reels, &c. — 1793. 

The Collection, described at page Ixxv., folio, pp. 39, was 
continued by the publication of " A Second Book of Sixty- 
eight new Reels and Strathspeys." 
y And by "A Third Book of Sixty-eight new Reels and 
Strathspeys, &c., compiled and composed by Robert M'ln- 
tosh, and dedicated to Mrs Oswald of Auchincruive. Price 
7s." Folio, pp. 39. 

" Airs, Minuetts, Gavotts, and Reels. Mostly for two 
iolins, and a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
Composed by Robert Macintosh. Opera first. Price 7s. 6d. 
To which is added a Solo, intended as a Specimen of a set 



of Solos for the Violin, which the Author purposes to publish 
afterwards. Edinburgh ; printed for the Author, and sold 
at his house in Advocate's Close, and at Corri & Suther- 
land's, and the other Music shops. J. Johnson, sculpt., 
Edinburgh." Folio, pp. 40. 

" Sixty-eight New Reels, Strathspeys, and Quick Steps ; 
also some Slow Pieces, with Variations, for the Violin and 
Pianoforte, with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
Composed by Eobert Mackintosh, and Dedicated, by permis- 
sion, to the Honourable Mrs Campbell of Lochnell. Entd. 
in Stationers' Hall. Price 6s. Where may be had, at the 
undermentioned places, the Author's first Book of Airs, 
Minuets, Reels, &c. Printed for the Author, and to be had 
at his house, Skinner's Close, & of all the Music sellers in 
Edinburgh ; A. Macgowan, Glasgow ; & Longman & Brod- 
rip, London." Folio, pp. 39. 

" A 3rd Book of Sixty-Eight New Reels and Strath- 
speys, also above forty old Famous Reels. For the Violin 
and Pianoforte, with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsi- 
chord. Compiled & Composed by Robert Mackintosh. De- 
dicated, by permission, to Mi"S Oswald of Auchincruive. 
Entd. in Stationers' Hall. Price 7s. May be had at the 
undermentioned places the Author's 1st & 2nd Book of Airs, 
Minuets, Reels, &c. Printed for the Author, and to be had 
at his house. Skinner's Close, & of all the Music sellers in 
Edinburgh ; A. Macgowan, Glasgow ; & Longman & Brod- 
rip, London." Folio, pp. 39. 

" A Fourth Book of New Strathspey Reels, also some 
Famous old Reels, for the Pianoforte or Harp. Dedicated, 
by permission, to her Grace the Dutchess of Manchester. 
Compiled and Composed by Robert Mackintosh. Entd. at 
Stationers' Hall. Price 8s. London ; printed for the Author, 
3 Little Vine Street, Piccadilly, by Lovenu and Mitchell, 


Music Sellers to liis Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, 
No. 29 New Bond Street." 

Robert M'Intosh, or " Red Rob," as he was familiarly 
called, settled in London, where he died in 1807. 


It may be added, that the first volume of this Collection, 
published in February 1 790 by William Napier, music-seller 
in the Strand, contains 81 Songs, the Airs harmonised by 
four professional Musicians — Dr S. Arnold, William Shield, 
Thomas Carter, and F. H. Barthelemon. The Harmony 
consists of a figured bass for the Harpsichord, with a Violin 
Accompaniment. The second volume contains 100 Songs, 
the whole of the Airs harmonised by Joseph Haydn ; but in 
neither volume are there any Symphonies. This Second 
volume, " Printed for William Napier, Music seller to their 
Majesties, No. 9 Great Queen Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields," 
[1792], has an engraved frontispiece by Bartolozzi, from a 
design by W. Hamilton, R.A. 

" A Selection of Original Scots Songs, in Three Parts, 
The Harmony by Haydn. Dedicated by permission to Her 
Majesty. Vol. III., price 26s. London; printed for Willm. 
Napier, Music seller to their Majesties, No. 49 Great Queen 
Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields. Neele, sc. Strand. The above 
vol. may be had, in four separate Numbers, at 7s. each. 
Entered at Stationers' Hall." 

. , " Napier's Selection of Dances and Strathspeys, with new 
and appropriate Basses, adapted for the Pianoforte, Harp, 
&c., price 10s. 6d. Entd. Stationers' Hall. Printed for 
Wm. Napier, Music Seller, and Musician in Ordinary to his 
Majesty, Lisle Street, Leicester Square. Where may be 
had, Napier's Three Volumes of Scots Songs. The Harmony 
by Haydn and other eminent Composers." Folio, pp. 36. 


" Died lately at Somerston, Mr William Napier, in the 
72d year of his age. He was distinguished for his musical 
skill, and for the beautiful selections of Scotch Ballads which 
he edited. For many years he belonged to his Majesty's 
Band, and to the professional concert, but was obliged to 
retire on account of the gout in his hands, to which he 
became a victim." — See Scots Magazine, August 1812, 
pp. 648. 


The notice of Urbani's works, at page Ixxvii., is by no 
means complete ; and the publication of Book I. should be 
referred to 1792, or the beginning of 1793. In a letter, 
dated 2d May 1793, a request is made to a lady, by a friend 
of the writer, to purchase for her " a copy of Urbani's new 
publication of Songs, at Corri's or any other Music shop." 
Book II., dedicated to Lady Catherine Douglas, has a por- 
trait of Allan Bamsay and the same imprint as the first, and 
contains pp. 50. Book III. is dedicated to the Hon. Lady 
Carnegie. Edinburgh, printed and sold by Urbani and Lis- 
ten, 10 Princes Street, pp. 54. Book IV. is entitled " A 
Selection of Scots Songs," &c., and is dedicated to the Bight 
Hon. Lady Lucy Bamsay, with the same imprint as Book III. 
Books V. and VI., completing the work, were published to- 
gether, as " A Select Collection of Original Scotch Airs ; 
with Verses, the most part of which were written by the 
celebrated Bobert Burns." The imprint is the same; and 
the dedication, to the Duchess of Bedford, is dated from 
Edinburgh, February 1, 1804. The Words and the Music 
are pi-inted on opposite pages, and each extend to pp. 59. 

A new edition of this Collection bears " Edinburgh, 
printed and sold by John Sutherland," as four volumes in 
three, the first corresponding with Books I. and II. ; the 


second with Books III. and IV. ; the thh-d and fourth in one, 

with Books V. and VI., retaining, in this volume, the original 

dedication to the Duchess of Bedford. In this Collection, as 

Mr Graham remarks, " The Melodies were harmonised by 

Urbani, with an accompaniment for the Pianoforte, the 

Harmony filled up in notes for the right hand ; and the first 

four volumes have, besides, Accompaniments for Two Violins 

and a Viola, all printed in score, along with the Voice part. 

Each song has introductory and concluding Symphonies. 

Urbani's Selection is remarkable in three respects — the 

novelty of the number and kind of instruments used in the 

Accompaniments ; the filling up of the Pianoforte Harmony ; 

and the use, for the first time, of introductory and concluding 

Symphonies to the Melodies." 

" A Favourite Selection of Scots Tunes, properly arranged 

as Duettos, for Two German Flutes or Two Violins, by P. 

Urbani. Book 1st, price 5s. N.B. — The first part arranged 

to play as Solos, price 3s. Edinburgh : Printed and sold 

by Urbani and Listen. Entd. Stat. Hall." Oblong 4to, 
pp. 24. 

Book Second (same title as above), from page 25 to 48 

Books First and Second, for Second Violin or Flute, se- 
parately, same size and number of pages. 


" A Collection of Catches, Canons, Glees, Duetts, &c. 
Selected from the Works of the most eminent Composers, 
Antient and Modern. Vol. I. Edinburgh : Printed for J. 
Sibbald, Parliament Square, and Messrs Corri and Suther- 
land, Music sellers to Her Majesty. J. Johnson, sculpt., 
Edin^" 4 vols, oblong 4to, each volume containing pp. 112. 
The first volume of this Collection is a republication of that 



of Stewart, in 1780, described supra^ p. xcv. The imprint in 
some copies was changed to " Edinburgh, printed for J. Sib- 
bald & Co., and sold at their Circulating Library, Parliament 
Square/^ A still later edition of the same Collection has 
this imprint : " Edinburgh, printed and sold by Gow & 
Shepherd, Music sellers. No, 41 North Bridge, price 8s. 6d." 
There is also an edition of the first two volumes : " Printed 
and sold by John Watlen, Music seller, 34 North Bridge. 
Price 8s. 6d." 


" A Collection of Duetts for Two German Flutes or two 
Violins. Selected from the best Authors, and containing 
many scarce and valuable pieces. By a Society of Gentle- 
men. Price 4s. 6d. Edinr. : Printed and sold by J. Brysson, 
Music seller. Cross, where may be had. The Scots Musical 
Museum in Four Volumes, each Volume consisting of 100 
Scots Songs, each Vol. 6s. — 24s." In oblong 4to, pp. 60. 


" A Selection, &c." See p. Ixix. This collection, in place 
of three, consists of six volumes. It was twice republished 
by Aird's successor, under the following titles : — 

" A Selection of Scotch, English, Irish, and Foreign Airs, 
adapted for the Fife, Violin, or German Flute. Vol. I. 
Humbly dedicated to the Volunteer and Defensive Bands of 
Great Britain and Ireland. (Glasgow Musical Circulating 
Library.) Printed by J. M'Fadyen, Glasgow. Price 3s. 6d. 
Where may be had the other Five Volumes." 

The same engraved title serves for each of the six volumes, 
the number of the volume being filled in with the pen. In 
small oblong 8vo. Vol. L, pp. 74; Vol. IL, pp. 80; Vol. 
III., pp. 155 to 233 ; Vols. IV., V., and VL, each pp. 80. 


Except the last volume, which ends with 181, the other 
volumes have each 200 Airs. 

" Aird's Selection of Scotch, English, Irish, and Foreign 
Airs, adapted to the Fife, Violin, or German Flute. Glas- 
gow, printed and sold by J. M'Fadyen." Volumes First to 
Fifth, small oblong 8vo. 

" Aird's 6th and Last Volume of Scotch, English, Irish, 
and Foreign Airs, adapted for the Fife, Violin, or German 
Flute. Glasgow, printed and sold, with the other 5 volumes, 
by J. M'Fadyen, Music seller and stationer, Willson Street, 
&c. G. Walker, sculpt." Pp. 80. 


]y " A Selection of the most approved Highland Strathspeys, 
Country Dances, English and French Dances, with a Harp- 
sichord & Violoncello Bass. Dedicated to the Gentlemen of 
the Musical Society of Greenock. By John Anderson. 
Edinburgh : Printed for the Author, and sold by Corri and 
Sutherland, Music-sellers to her Majesty, and by all Music 
and Booksellers in Scotland. Price 6s. J. Johnson, sculp." 
Folioj pp. 36, and 105 tunes. 


" A Collection of Strathspey Reels and Country Dances, 
with a Bass, &c. Dedicated to the Countess of Kinnoul. 
By John Bowie, at Perth. Edinburgh, printed for the 
Author.'"' Folio, pp. 35. 


i/' "A Select Collection of Original Scottish Airs, arranged 
for one and two voices. With Introductory and Concluding 
Symphonies, for the Flute, Violin, and Pianoforte. By T. H. 
Butler." (Entd. Stationers' Plall. Folio, price 8s.) Most 


respectfully Dedicated to the Eight Hon'^'s. the Earl of Cas- 
silis. (His Lordship's arms engraved on the title-page.) 
Printed and sold by Muir, Wood, & Go., Music-sellers, Edin- 
burgh, and A. Macgown, Glasgow. 25 pages with music, 
25- with words, 25 Airs, and 49 Songs. 


" Sangs of the Lowlands of Scotland, carefully compared 
with the original editions, and embellished with character- 
istic designs composed and engraved by the late David Allan, 
Esq., Historical Painter. Edinburgh : printed and sold by 
Andrew Foulis, Strichens Close, High Street, 1799." 4to, 
pp. 222. 

This collection, which scarcely comes within the scope of 
the present List, is connected with a work entitled " An 
Introduction to the History of Poetry in Scotland ; together 
with a Conversation on Scotish Song, by Alexander Camp- 
bell." Edinburgh, 1798, 4to. At the end of the volume is 
advertised " Twelve Songs set to Music," by the same author. 
Pie was employed by the Highland Society to collect High- 
land Airs, and the result of his Tours for that purpose 
appeared in two volumes in folio, under the title of " Albyn's 
Anthology," 1816 and 1818. — Campbell was born in 1764, 
and died at Edinburgh in 1824. A notice of his life is con- 
tained in Chambers's Scottish Biography, vol. i. p. 463. 


•^ " A Collection of New E.eels and Highland Strathspeys, 
with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord, by Joshua 
Campbell. A number of which are his own Composition. 
Glasgow, printed for the Author, and sold at the Music shops 
-in Edinburgh and Glasgow. Price 5s. 6d. J. Johnson, 
sculpt. Edin." Folio, pp. 48. 


V' " A Collection of Favourite Tunes, with New Variations, 
adapted for the Violin and German Flute, with a Bass for 
the Violoncello, and Thorough Bass for the Harpsichord, by 
Joshua Campbell. Glasgow, printed for" (the rest cut off 
in the binding). Oblong 4to, pp. 81. 


^ " A New Medlj Overture, consisting entirely of Scots 
Tunes and Thirty-Six of the most favorite Scots Airs, to 
which is added the favorite air of Chivey Chase, all with 
Variations for two Violins or two German flutes and a 
Violoncello, also adapted to the Pianoforte. The Airs se- 
lected and the Variations composed by Walter Clagget. 
Entd. Stat. Hall. Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and to 
be had at all the Music shops." (Engraved by George 
Walker). Folio, pp. 28. 

The Part for the Second Violin or Flute is published 
separately, with title-page same as above ; folio, pp. 12. 

Clagget's Scots Tunes for the Pianoforte or Flute, price 6s. 

In a list of favourite music, sold by J. M'Fadyen, at the 
Glasgow Musical Circulating Library, we find " Six Solos 
and Six Scots Airs, with Variations for the Violin or Violon- 
cello, with a Thorough Bass for the Harpsichord. Composed 
by Walter Clagget. Opera, 2do. London, printed for the 
Author, and sold by him at the Sedan Chair, Great Hart 
street, Covent Garden, and Messrs Thompson & Sons in 
St Paul's Church yard." Folio, pp. 39. 


\/ " A Collection of New Strathspey Reels and Country 
Dances, with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. 
Dedicated to the Musical Society of Perth. Composed by 
John Clark, Perth. Entd. Stat. Hall." Folio, pp. 21. 



V " Clarkson's Musical Entertainment, being a Selection of 
various Tunes and Pieces of Music, adapted for the Piano- 
forte or Harpsichord. London: Published for the Author; 
to be had at his House, Carrubber's Close, Edinburgh. Price 
3s, 6d." Folio, pp. 20. 

Died at St Andrews, 20th January 1812, " Mr John 
Clarkson, many years an eminent Teacher of Dancing there, 
and at Kirkaldy, Cupar, and Dunfermline." — (Scots Mag. 
1812, p. 158.) 


V "A Complete Collection of much-admired Tunes, as Danced 
at the Balls & Public's of the late Mr Strange. Purchased 
and arranged for the Pianoforte, and respectfully Dedicated 
to his Scholars, by John Clarkson, Junr., Teacher of Danc- 
ing, Edinburgh. Edinburgh : Printed and sold by J. Ha- 
milton, 24 North Bridge street, opposite the Post Office." 
Folio, pp. 50. Price 10s. 6d. 


/ " A Collection of Reels, by Isaac Cooper of Banff." Pub- 
lished about 1783; advertised on the last page of Aird's third 
Glasgow Collection. Price 3s. 


" Dale's Collection of Sixty favourite Scotch Songs, 
taken from the Original Manuscripts of the most celebrated 
Scotch Authors and Composers, properly adapted for the 
German Flute. Book II., price 5s. London ; printed for 
J. Dale, No. 19 Cornhill, and the corner of Holies Street, 
Oxford Street." Oblong 4to. 


" Dale's Collection of Duets for two performers on one 
Piano Forte, by the most celebrated Composers." Folio, in 
four books, and containing six tunes. A list of " Music 
published by Joseph Dale, Piano Forte maker to his Eoyal 
Highness the Prince of Wales," prefixed to one of these 
books, has the date 1809. 


" A Collection of Original Music, consisting of Slow Airs, 
Strathspeys, Reels, Quadrilles, Waltzes, Hornpipes, &c. 
Adapted for the Pianoforte, or Violin and Violoncello. By a 
Citizen. Aberdeen : Engraved and printed and published 
by James Daniel, Engraver, &c." Folio, pp. 39. 

DING (LAWEENCE). "'^, - " 

" The Anacreontic Museum, or, Thirty Select Catches, 
Canons, Glees, &c. (from the works of the most eminent 
Masters). Inscribed to all Catch Clubs and Practitioners of 
Music ; by Lawrence Ding, $tXo-dp/Liowa, Editor of the Song- 
ster's Favourite and Scholar's Assistant. Edinburgh : printed 
for and sold by the Editor, at his house, first entry within 
the Netherbow, north side, and at the Music Shops of Messrs 
E. Bremner, Stewart and Co., &c." Oblong 8vo, pp. 16. 


1/ " A Collection of Strathspey Eeels, Jigs, &c., with a Bass 
for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. To which is added Four 
Minuets, Four Marches, in 3 Parts. Dedicated (by permis- 
sion) to his Grace the Duke of Athole. By Charles Dufi", 
Dundee. Price 6s. Edinburgh : N. & M. Stewart & Co., 
Corri & Co., Johnson & Co., R. Ross, and J. Brysson ; and 
by A. M'Gowan, Glasgow ; and Longman & Broderip, 
London. J. Johnson, sculpt. N.B. — The Tunes marked 


J. M'D. are composed by Mr Jno. M' Donald, late Dancing- 
Master, Dundee." Folio, pp. 36. 

ELOUIS (j.) 

" First Volume of a Selection of Favorite Scots Songs, 
with Accompaniments for the Harp or Pianoforte, which 
may be performed on these Instruments either with the 
Voice or without it, as Familiar Lessons; to which are 
added Several Airs, with Variations. Composed and Ee- 
spectfully Dedicated, by permission, to the Kight Honorable 
Lady Montgomerie, by J. Elouis. Enf^. at Sta. Hall. Price 
each vol. One Guinea. Edinburgh : Sold by Messers Gow 
& Shepherd; Messers Muir, Wood, & Coy., Music-sellers ; 
and by Eobt. Birchall, at his music warehouse, No. 133 
New Bond Street, London. The music is engraved by J. 
Johnson, and the letterpress by Oliver & Co. Every copy 
is signed by the Author and Proprietor, J. Elouis." Folio. 
The words and music are printed on opposite pages. The 
former, pp. 49; the latter, 51; also pp. 11, with 3 Airs 
(without the words) repeated with Variations, and a Glos- 
sary. In the preface it is said, — " There is 7iot one Edition 
of Scottish Songs in which lines with two, three, and some- 
times four syllables too muck or too little are not frequently 
to be met with. The troublesome and ungrateful task of 
restoring the verses to their proper measure, by retrenching 
or adding words to the defective lines (without encroaching 
upon the sense), was undertaken by Mrs Elouis, the author^s 
wife. It can now be safely asserted that there is no other 
selection of Scottish Songs but this, in which the verses, from 
being uniformly correct, always suit their respective airs." 

" Second " Volume of a selection of Favorite Scots Songs, 
&c. " Dedicated to the Eight Honorable the Earl of Eglin- 
ton," — in other respects the title same as the first vol. Pp. 


50 with words, and 50 music ; and 7 pp. with 3 tunes with 
variations. Each vol. contains 50 Airs with the words, be- 
sides the Airs with variations. Pubhshed by subscription. 
The Queen and thirteen others of the Royal Family are 
amongst the subscribers. The advertisement to the second 
volume Is dated 1807. 


\/" A Collection of Slow Airs, Strathspeys, and Reels, with 
a Bass for the Violoncello, Harpsichord, or Pianoforte. De- 
dicated by permission to the Highland Society of London, 
by Jno. and Andw. Gow. London ; printed and sold by 
Wra. Campbell, No. 8 Dean Street, Soho ; and to be had of 
the Authors, No. 60 King Street, Golden Square, price 
7s. 6d." Foho, pp. 36. 


U" "A Collection of Strathspey Reels, Jigs, &c., for the 
Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello. Dedicated to Mrs Col. 
Grant. By Donald Grant. Price 8s. 6d." (Folio, pp. 38 ; 
121 Tunes, 76 original.) " Edinburgh, printed for the 
Author at Elgin, and Mr Gow, Edinburgh, and Mr Davie, 

gunn (john). 

\y' " Forty favorite Scotch Airs, adapted for the Violin, 
Gei'man Flute, or Violoncello, with the phrases mark**., and 
proper fingering for the latter instrument ; being a Supple- 
ment to the Examples In the Theory and Practice of finger- 
ing the Violoncello. By John Gunn." Ent. Stat. Hall. 
Price 7s. 6d. Folio. London. 

Gunn was the author of other works — " The Art of play- 
ing the German Flute on new principles, price 10s. 6d. ;" 


also, " The School for the German Flute, Part. I., 5s.,"" are 
advertised along with his Forty Scotch Airs, on the title-page 
of " The Theory and Practice of fingering the Violoncello, 
&c., by John Gunn, Teacher of the Violoncello. The second 
edition. London, printed for the Author, and sold by him, 
at No. 1 Bennet Street, K.athbone Place, and by Preston, 
&c." Folio, pp. 64. 

Another work which he published was, an " Historical 
Enquiry respecting the performance on the Harp in the 
Highlands of Scotland, from the earliest times until it was 
discontinued, about the year 1734. Drawn up by desire of 
the Highland Society of Scotland, and published under its 
patronage, by John Gunn, F.A.S.E., (fee." Edinburgh, 1807, 
large 4to, pp. 112, with three engravings of Queen Mary's 
Harp and the Caledonian Harp. The Author announces, in 
a postscript, his intention of publishing a much more detailed 
work ; but it never appeared. 


" A Choice Collection of Scots Reels, or Country Dances, 
and Strathspeys, with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsi- 
chord. Edinburgh, printed and sold by J. Hamilton, North 
Bridge. Price 3s." Oblong 4to, pp. 40. 
[r " The Caledonian Museum, containing a favorite Collec- 
tion of Ancient and Modern Scots Tunes, adapted to the 
German Flute or Violin. Book HI. Price 3s. Edinburgh ; 
J. Hamilton, 24 North Bridge Street." Oblong 4to. From 
page 52 to 75 inclusive, containing 100 Airs. 

Hamilton died in 1814. See note to Song 592, p. 537. 


" Eighteen Airs for Two Violins and a Bass, dedicated (by 
permission) to her Grace the Duchess of Athol, by George 


Jenkins. Price 3s. N.B. — To render this work useful for 
Harpsichord performers, the first Violin and Bass are put In 
Score. Printed for and sold by J. Brysson, at his Music 
shop, Edinburgh." Oblong folio, pp. 9. 
\/ " New Scotch Music, consisting of slow Airs, Strathspeys, 
quick E,eels, Country Dances, and a Medley on a new plan, 
with a Bass for a Violoncello or Harpsichord. Dedicated by 
permission to his Koyal Highness the Prince of Wales. 
Composed by George Jenkins, Teacher of Scotch Dancing. 
Price 10s. 6d. To be had of the Author, No. 125 High 
Holborn, Bloomsbury." Folio, pp. 70. 

In the list of New Music, published by George Goulding, 
(upon the last page of Sir Adam Gordon's Psalms, with music 
by Drs Arnold and Calcott, in 1791), we find "Jenkins's 
Thirty Highland Airs, price 5s." 


|.- " A Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c., with a Bass for 
the Violoncello or Harpsichord. Dedicated, by permission, 
to Mrs Moncrietf of Eeedie, by Alex. Leburn, Auchter- 
muchty. Price 2s. 6d. Edinr,, Johnson & Co." Folio, 
pp. 12. 


" Nine Minuets for the Harpsichord or Pianoforte. Com- 
posed by John M'Donald, Teacher of Dancing In Dundee. 
Dedicated to her Grace the Duchess of Athole." Oblong 
4to, pp. 11. — See under Duff (Charles), p. cxix. 

m'fadyen (JOSEPH). 

W^' The Repository of Scots and Irish Airs, Strathspeys, 
Reels, &c. Part of the Slow Tunes adapted for two Violins 
and a Bass, others with variations. The whole with improved 


Bass for the Harpsichord or Pianoforte. Most respectfully 
Dedicated to the Eight Hon'''®. Lady Montstewart. Vol. 1st, 
price 6s. ; bound, 7s. 6d. Glasgow ; J. M'Fadyen." Oblong 
4to. 64 pages with Slow Airs, and 64 of Strathspey Eeels, 
&c. ; in all 128 pages. 


V " Thirty New Strathspey Eeels, &c,, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord. Composed by Abrm. Macintosh. 
Price 3s. Edinr., printed for and sold by the Author, and 
by J. Brysson, at late Bremner's. A. Macintosh, sc." Folio, 
pp. 11. Advertised in the Scots Magazine, December 1792. 


t- "A Collection of Slow Airs, Eeels, Strathspeys. Dedi- 
cated, by permission, to the Eight Hon'''". Lady Charlotte 
Campbell. Composed by D. Macintyre. Price 8s. London, 
John Gow & Son." Folio, pp. 40, and 79 Tunes. 


^ " A Collection of Eeels, Strathspeys, and Slow Tunes, 
arranged for the Pianoforte. Chiefly composed by Alexr. 
Mackay, Musician, Islay. (Subscribers, 5s. ; non-sub., 6s.) 
Dedicated, by permission, to the Eight Hon'''®. Lady Elinor 
Campbell of Islay and Shawfield. Glasgow, published by 
J. M'Fadyen." Folio, pp. 36. 

MACLEOD (H. p.) 

" A New Selection of the most approved Pieces, properly 
arranged as Duetts for two German Flutes, by H. P. Mac- 
leod, Teacher of Music. Book I. Edinburgh : Printed by 
the Author, and sold at all the Music Shops. Price 5s. 
Book IT. Edinburgh : Printed and sold by the Author, at 


his house, Richmond Court. J. Johnson, Sculpt" Oblong 
4to, the two books pp. 96, and Index. 


*-' " A Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for the 
Violoncello or Harpsichord. Composed by Wm. Marshall. 
Price 2s. 6d. Printed for Neil Stewart, and sold at his 
Music shop, Parliament Square, Edinburgh. Where may 
be had — 3 Books of Scots Songs, with Symphonies, each 
2s. 6d. ; M'Glashan's Strathspey Reels, 5s. ; M'Lean's Scots 
Tunes, with Variations, 5s. ; M'Gibbon's Scots Tunes, 3 
Numbers, each 2s. 6d. ; Marches and Airs, 1st and 2d Books, 
6s. Johnson, sculpt." Oblong folio, pp. 12, and 36 tunes. 

t " Marshall's Scottish Airs, Melodies, Strathspeys, Reels, 
&c., for the Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello, with appro- 
priate Basses. Dedicated to the Most Noble the Marchioness 
of Huntly. Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 12s. 6d. ; to non- 
subscribers, 15s. Edinburgh : Published for the Author, and 
sold by Alex. Robertson, 47 Prince's Street, &c." Folio, 
pp. 60, and 176 Tunes. 1822. 

L,, "Volume 2d of a Collection of Scottish Melodies, Reels, 
Strathspeys, Jigs, Slow Airs, &c., for the Pianoforte, Violin, 
and Violoncello, being the Genuine and Posthumous W^orks 
of William Marshall. All the Airs in this Collection are 
now published for the first time. This work is Copyright. 
Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 6s. Edinburgh : published by 
Alex. Robertson, 39 Princes Street," &c.j [1847]. Folio, 
pp. 35, and 81 Tunes. 


'^ '' A Collection of Highland Music, consisting of Strath- 
speys, Reels, Marches, Waltzes, and Slow Airs, with Varia- 
tions, original and selected, for the Pianoforte, Violin, and 


Violoncello. Dedicated to the Eight Hon'''^ Lady Seaforth, 
by William Morrison. Price 7s. 6d. Printed for, and sold 
by J. Young & Co., Inverness, &c. Entd. Stat. Hall." 
Folio, pp. 36. 


To the notices given at page Ixiv. it may be added, that 
he was the author of a volume entitled " Sketches relative 
to the History and Theory, but more especially to the Prac- 
tice of Dancing, as a necessary accomplishment to the youth 
of both Sexes, &c. By Francis Peacock, Aberdeen." Aber- 
deen : printed by J. Chalmers & Co. Sold by Angus and 
Son, &c. 1805, 8vo. It is dedicated to the Duchess of 
Gordon ; and in the list of subscribers may be found the 
names of all the leading persons in Aberdeenshire. It also 
marks the estimation in which the author was held, to find 
added to this list, " By order of the Town Council of Aber- 
deen, 20 copies." In his advertisement, dated April 1805, 
he refers to " the experience of upwards of sixty years, during 
which he has been a teacher of Dancing ;'' and states that if 
any emolument should be derived from the publication, it 
would be appropriated towards the Lunatic Asylum, then 
lately established in Aberdeen. 


U" "A Collection of Strathspey Heels and Country Dances, 
&c., with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord, humbly 
dedicated to Mrs Farquharson of Monaltrie, by Robert 
Petrie, at Kirkmichael, Perthshire. Price 4s. Edinburgh : 
Printed for the Author, and sold by Stewart & Co., John- 
ston & Co., Lawnmarket, and all the Music-sellers in Town 
and Country. J. Johnson, sculpt.'' Folio, pp. 22. 



V " A Second Collection of Strathspey Eeels, &c., for the 
Piano Forte, Violin, and Violincello, humbly dedicated to 
Mrs Garden of Troup, by Robert Petrie at Kirkmichael. 
Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and sold by all the Music 
sellers in Town and Country." Later copies have, " Edin- 
burgh, printed for Gow and Shepherd, 41 North Bridge 
Street George Walker, sculp*." Folio. 

jj.' " A Third Collection of Strathspey Reels, with a Bass for 
the Violoncello or Pianoforte, humbly dedicated to Francis 
Garden, Esq., junior, of Troup, by Robert Petrie, at Kirk- 
michael. Price 6s. London : Printed for the Author, and 
to be had at all the Music-sellers in Town and Country." 
Folio, pp. 26. 

y " A Fourth Collection of Strathspeys, Reels, Jiggs, and 
Country Dances, for the Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello. 
Composed and respectfully dedicated to Mrs Garden Junr., 
of Troop and Glenlyon, by Robert Petrie. Price 5s. Edin- 
burgh, printed for the Author, and to be had of him at Kirk- 
michael, Perthshire, and at all Music shops. Engraved by 
W. Hutton, High Street, Edin." Folio, pp. 24. 


i A Collection of Reels and Strathspeys, &c. Edinburgh. 
Folio, pp. 40. Wants title-page, &c. 


t " A Collection of Reels, Strathspeys, and Jigs, with a 
Bass for the Violoncello or Pianoforte, dedicated by permis- 
sion to the Hon. Miss Elliot, by John Pringle. Entered at 
Stationers' Hall. Price 5s. Edinburgh, printed for the 
author, to be had of him, No. 16 Rose Street, and at all the 
Music shops." Folio, pp. 19. 



I ■ " A Collection of Reels, Stratbspeys, Jigs, Waltzes, &c., 
foi' the Pianoforte, Harpsichord, and Violin, with a Bass for 
the Violoncello. Composed and dedicated, by permission, 
to Miss Georgina Scott of Seabank, by Daniel Robertson. 
Price 6s. Edinr., printed by Muii-, Wood, & Co., No. 7 
Leith Street. Entd. Stat. Hall." Folio, pp. 26. 


" A Complete Book of Instructions for beginners on the 
Harpsichord or Piano-Forte. To which is added, a select 
set of Airs, Scots Songs, and Lessons, composed by John 
Ross, Organist of St PaiiFs Chapel, Aberdeen. Price 8s. 6d. 
London, printed for the Author, by Broderip & Wilkinson, 
No. 13 Haymarket." Oblong folio, pp. 67. 

A notice of Ross is already given at page Ixxix. 


1/ " A Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c., with a Bass for 
the Violoncello or Harpsichord. Dedicated by permission to 
Miss Abercromby of Tullibody. Composed by William 
Shepherd. Edinburgh, printed for the Author, and to be 
had at all the Music shops in town and country. Price 5s. 
George Walker, Sculp*., Edinburgh." Folio, pp. 26. 

" A Second Collection of Strathspey Reels, &c., for the 
Pianoforte, Violin, and Violoncello. Dedicated to Lady 
Carmichael of Castlecraig. Composed by William Shepherd. 
Entd. Stat. Hall. Price 6s. Edinburgh, printed and sold 
by Gow & Shepherd, Music-sellers, No. 16 Princes Street. 
(J. Johnson, sculpt.)." Folio, pp. 26. 

William Shepherd, musician, in 1793 resided in Hamil- 
ton's Close, Bristo ; and having entered into partnership 


with Nathaniel Gow in 1796, they carried on business as 
music-sellers in Edinburgh, under the firm of Gow and 
Shepherd, on an extensive scale. Shepherd died at Edin- 
burgh on the 19th of January 1812. 


K "A Collection of Strathspeys, E-eels, Giggs, &c., with a 
Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. Dedicated (by 
permission) to the Right Hon*^'®. Lady Mary Hay. By 
Charles Stewart, Musician to the late Mr Strange. Price 5s. 
N.B. A few New Hornpipes, Minuets, and Cotillons, by the 
most esteemed Composers. Edinr., printed for the Author, 
and to be had at Muir, Wood, & Co. Entd. Stat. Hall." 
Folio, pp. 25. 

1/ "A Collection of a few New Hornpipes, Minuets, Cotil- 
lions, Jigs, &c. By Charles Stewart." Folio, pp. 25. 


A list of the dates of publication of the several volumes or 
books of Thomson's Collection, as entered in Stationers' 
Hall, was communicated to Mr G. F. Graham, and is printed 
in " The Songs of Scotland," vol. i. p. vi. Mr Thomson, 
for many years Principal Clerk of the Board of Trustees, 
Edinburgh, died at Leith Links, on the 18tli February 1851, 
at the very advanced age of 94. — It may be noticed as a 
singular fact that he should never have seen Burns, or at 
least have had any personal intercourse with him, notwith- 
standing the aid so liberally awarded by the Poet, during 
the four years of their correspondence. The series of the 
original letters and songs addressed by Burns to Thomson, 
arranged and bound in one volume, were exposed to sale by 
auction in November 1852, at the upset price of £210, and 
fetched Two Hundred and Sixty Guineas. 



" A Collection of the most approved Church Tunes now- 
used in the Church of Scotland. To which is added, a few 
Catches and Songs, by Archd. Walker. Price Is. Edin- 
burgh, printed and sold at J. Brysson's Music shop. South- 
side Cross Well. Third edition, with additions. J. John- 
son, sculpt." 12mo, pp. 40. 

^/ j/if^*c = , WALKER (JAMES). 

\f "A Second Collection of Reels, Strathspeys, Jigs, &c., 
with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord. Dedicated 
to Lady St Clair of Sinclair, by James Walker, Dysart. 
Printed for the Author, and to be had at his house in Dysart. 
Sold also by Jas. Johnson, Music-seller, Lawnmarket, and at 
all the other dealers of Music in Edinburgh. J. Johnson, 
sculpt." Folio, price 4s. 


" Twelve Original Scotch Songs, for the Voice and Harp- 
sichord, with an Accompaniment for the Violin or Flute, 
dedicated by permission to His Koyal Highness the Prince 
of Wales. Composed and adapted by William Wilson. 
Entered at Stationers' Hall. Op. III. Price 10s. 6d. Lon- 
don, printed for the author. No. 2 Camden Place, Hampstead 
Road, by Longman and Broderip, No. 26 Cheapside, and 
No. 13 Haymarket," &c. Folio, pp. 29, besides title and 
printed list of Subscribers. One of these " Original Scotch 
Songs," is " Roy's Wife of Auldy Wallach." 


Of the preceding Collections, some are iio doubt posterior 
to the period which this Catalogue was intended to comprise. 
Others again are purposely omitted, when the dates of publi- 
cation were well ascertained not to fall within that period — 
such, for instance, as the later publications of George Thom- 
son ; the British Minstrel, by E. A. Smith ; the Melodies of 
Scotland, by Finlay Dun ; the Dance Music of Scotland, by 
J. T. Surenne ; the Caledonian Kepository, by James Davie, 
Aberdeen ; the Complete Eepository, by Malcolm Keith ; 
with many others, of more or less importance. 

To this list might be added the principal collections of 
Highland Airs, such as Albyn's Anthology, by Alexander 
Campbell ; Airs and Melodies peculiar to the Highlands of 
Scotland and the Isles, by Captain Simon Fraser ; the 
Ancient Martial Music of Caledonia, called Piobaireachd, by 
Donald Macdonald ; and the Ancient Piobaireachd or High- 
land Pipe Music, by Angus Mackay. 

But before concluding these Notices, it may not be out of 
place to mention a volume entitled " Musical Memoirs of 
Scotland, with Historical Annotations, and numerous illus- 
trative Plates," by the late Sir John Graham Dalyell, Edin- 
burgh, 1849, 4to. The title of this volume furnishes no very 
distinct notion of its contents, which exhibit the result of a 
long-continued and laborious investigation into the History 
of Music in Scotland, "selected from copious collections on 
the subject of Scottish history, the accumulation of many 
years;" and accompanied with plates of the various Musical 
instruments in use from the earliest times. 

Another work, published by Messrs Wood, and edited by 
Mr Farquhar Graham, may also be mentioned, as the in- 
formation contained in the Notes to Johnson's Musical 
Museum has been copiously employed by the Editor, and 


duly acknowledged in the following terms : — " The kind 
liberality of the Messrs Blackwood has enabled the publish- 
ers of this work to avail themselves of those valuable Notes 
and Illustrations above referred to ; and thus to I'ender this 
new Collection much more interesting than it could other- 
wise have been." The work referred to contains an extensive 
and judicious selection, with interesting notices and remarks 
by the Editor, under the title of " The Songs of Scotland 
adapted to their appropriate Melodies, arranged with Piano- 
forte Accompaniments, by G. F. Graham, T. M. Mudie, 
J. T. Surenne, H. E. Dibdin, Finlay Dun, &c. Illustrated 
with Historical, Biographical, and Critical Notices, by G. F. 
Graham. Wood and Co., 12 Waterloo Place, Edinburgh, 
1848." 3 vols, royal 8vo. 

As reference is made in the previous Introduction to some 
of the early composers of Sacred Music, I may also be per- 
mitted here to specify a recent publication, containing a very 
extensive and elaborate Collection of Church Tunes, from 
the earliest and most authentic editions of the English, 
Scottish, and German Psalters, skilfully harmonised. The 
volume is entitled " The Standard Psalm-Tune Book, con- 
taining upwards of 600 specimens, comprising all the avail- 
able Tunes in the English, Scotch, and Geneva Psalters, 
with many others from the German ' Choral Bucher,' and 
other authentic sources, many of them rare, the whole 
faithfully compiled from the original editions, and arranged 
for 4 Voices, with an Organ accompaniment, by Henry 
Edward Dibdin, Organist of Trinity Chapel, Edinburgh." 
1852. Folio. 



Aberdeen Cantus, 34-41. 

Aird, James, 69, 114. 

Anderson, John, 115. 

Anonymous Collections, 97, 102, 
113, 114. 

Baillie, Alexander, 48, 92. 

Barsanti, Francis, 53, 96. 

Bocchi, Lorenzo, 42. 
vBowie, John, 115. 
iBremner, Robert, 55-56, 96-97. 
V Brysson, John, 74. 
;^ Butler, T.H., 115. 
•, Campbell, Alexander, 116. 
- Campbell, Joshua, 116. 
•'Campbell, William, 74. 
^■Clagget, Walter, 117. 

Clark, John, 60, 99. 
VClark, John, Perth, 117. 

Clarke, Stephen, 73. 
' Clarkson, John, 118. 
■ Clarkson, John, junior, 118. 

Cooper, Isaac, 118. 

Corri, Domenico, 70-73, 109. 

Craig, Adam, 46, 47, 89. 
■. Gumming, Angus, 66, 100. 
■. Dale, Joseph, 76, 118. 

Daniel, James, 119. 
. Dauney, William, 25, 86. 

Davidson, Thomas, 35. 
Ding, Lawrence, 119. 
Dow, Daniel, 63, 101. 
Duff, Charles, 119. 
D'Urfey, Thomas, 41. 
Elouis, J., 120. 
Eglinton, Earl of, 107. 
Forbes, John, 34-41. 
Foulis,— 65. 
Frazer, William, 61. 
Gilson, Cornforth, 98, 99. 
Gow, Niell, 68, 103-106. 
Gow, Nathaniel, 103-108. 
Gow, John and Andrew, 103, 121. 
Graham, G. Farquhar, 131. 
Grant, Donald, 121. 
Gunn, John, 121. 
Hamilton, John, 122. 
Haydn, Joseph, 79. 
Jenkins, George, 122. 
Johnson, James, 80. 
Kelly, Thomas, Earl of, 61, 97. 
Leburn, Alexander, 123. 
Macdonald, John, 123. 
Macdonald, Malcolm, 69, 108. 
Macdonald, Patrick, 67. 
Macfarlane, the Laird of (Manu- 
scripts), 51, 93. 


; M'Fadyen, Joseph, 123. 
vM'Gibbon, William, 63-56, 95, 96. 
VM'Glashan, Alexander, 66. 
vMacintosh, Abraham, 124. 
vMackintosh, Robert, 75, 109-111. 
VMacintyre, D., 124. 
>>lMackay, Alexander, 124. 
VM'Lean, Charles, 65, 92, 93. 
Macleod, H. P., 124. 

V Marshall, William, 125. 
Millar, Edward, 33, 84. 

\'Morison, William, 125. 
Munro, Alexander, 47. 
Mure, Sir William, of Rowallane 
(Manuscripts), 86. 
":■' Napier, William, 73, 74, 111, 112. 

V Oswald, James, 48-51, 57, 58, 93-95. 
vPeacock, Francis, 63-65, 126. 
vPetrie, Robert, 126. 

Playford, John, 34, 87-89. 
i'Playford, Henry, 89-90. 
VPorteus, James, 127. 
^ Pringle, John, 127. 
(•,y Ramsay's Tea-table Miscellany, 43. 

Reid, General John, 58-60, 98-102. 
\ Riddel], John, 69, 101. 

Riddell, Robert, 76. 
Ritson, Joseph, 77. 
Robertson, Daniel, 128. 
Ross, John, 79,128. 
Sharpe, Charles K., 100. 
Shepherd, William, 128. 
■ Shirreffs, Andrew, 73. 
Sibbald, James, 78. . 
Sime, David, 74, 80. 
Skene of Halyairds (Manuscripts), 

, Stewart, Neill, 62, 102. 
Stewart, Charles, 129. 
Stuart, Alexander, 43. / 
Thomson, George, 75, 129. 
Thomson, William, 41-43, 92. 
Thumoth, Burk, 58, 98. 
Urbani, Peter, 77, 78, 112, 113. 
Vocal Miscellany, 78. 
Walker, Archibald, 130. 
Walker, James, 130. 
Walsh, J., 52, 90. 
Watts' Musical Miscellany, 43. 
Wilson, William, 130. 
Wood, Thomas (Manuscripts), 

27-33, 81-84. 










The words and air of this song were composed by Mr Mac- 
vicar, when purser of the Solbay man of war. It was originally 
published as a half-sheet song, and Oswald afterwards in- 
serted the music in his Caledonian Pocket Companion, book 
xi, in 1750. The late Mr D. Herd inserted the words in the 
first volume of his Scottish Songs, in 1776. The Highland 
King, intended as a parody on the former, was the produc- 
tion of a young lady, the friend of Charles Wilson of Edin- 
burgh. It first appeared in a collection of songs, edited l)y 
this Wilson, in 1779, entitled, St Cecilia, or the Lady and 
Gentleman's Harmonious Companion. 

The late Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee, in his Dissertation 
on Scotish Music, was of opinion, that this beautiful air must 
have been composed between the period of the Restoration 
and the Union. Mr William Thomson, editor of the Or- 
pheus Caledonius, on the other hand, supposed it to have 
been a composition of David Rizzio. Both opinions, how- 
ever, are equally fanciful, and unsupported by evidence. 
That the air, and first verse, including the chorus, of this 


song are ancient, there can be no doubt, because, in 1725, 
Thomson printed it as an ancient song ; but neither the name 
of its composer, of the tune, nor that of the poet who wrote 
the original words to which it is adapted, are now known. 
It is remarkable, that the old verse, beginning with, " I 
would clasp thee in my arms," is not to be found in Ram- 
say's Tea Table Miscellany, although it appears in the Or- 
pheus Caledonius. The four additional stanzas, beginning, 
" Of race divine,'* are generally attributed to Ramsay, but 
he himself annexes the letter X to the song, to denote that 
the author was unknown. 

>. Mr J. Stafford Smith, in his " Musica Antiqua," vol. 
iii. p. 183, gives this beautiful air as the composition of the 
celebrated Henry Purcell, because John Playford had printed 
it as such in his " Musick's Handmaid," published at London 
in 1689. The old Irish air called, " Lillibulero," is likewise 
given by Smith as Purcell's composition. But neither the 
Scotch nor the Irish air were composed by Purcell, (al- 
though he might have put a bass to them for his old friend 
Playford) nor have either of them the smallest resemblance 
to any of the other compositions of this truly eminent master. 
The Scottish air appears in a very old manuscript music book, 
now in the possession of the editor, written in square or lo- 
zenge shaped notes, under the title of, " Peggie, I must love 
thee," in all probability, long before Purcell was born. Of 
this ancient song nothing remains but the tune and the title, 
for the verses to which the air is adapted, both in the Or- 
pheus Caledonius, and in the Scots Musical Museum, were 
the production of Allan Ramsay. His friend, Crawfurd, 
likewise wrote a song to the same air, beginning, " Beneath 
a beech's grateful shade," inserted in Mr George Thomson's 
collection of Scots songs, vol. iii. p. 124, where it is beauti- 
fully harmonized and arranged as a duet for two voices, by 
the celebrated Dr Haydn. It may also be noticed enpasmni. 


that Henry Playford adapted an English song to the same 
Scottish air, beginning, " Tom and Will were shepherd 
swains,'' which was printed in his first volume of *' Wit and 
Mirth," printed at London in 1698. 

LILLIBURLERO and BULLEN- A-LAH were the pass 
words used by the Irish papists in their massacre of the Pro- 
testants in 1641. The song of Lilliburlero was written in 
1686, on the king's nominating General Talbot, a furious pa- 
pist, (newly created Earl of Tyrconnel) to the lieutenancy of 
Ireland. This song contributed not a little towards the great 
revolution in 1688. It is inserted in Percy's Reliques of An- 
cient English Poetry, vol. ii. p. 365. 


This song is the production of the late Rev. James Muir- 
head, minister of the parish of Urr, in the province of Gallo- 
way. Burns justly remarks, that " it is a beautiful song; and 
in the genuine Scots taste. We have Jew pastoral composi- 
tionSf I mean the pastoral of nature, that are equal to this."" — 
See his Reliques by Cromek. This song appears in Herd's 
collection in 1776. 



This is a very ancient Gallowegian melody. The two 
verses adapted to the air in this collection, were compiled 
from the fine old ballad, entitled, " The Lass of Lochroyan," 
which was first published in a perfect state by Sir Walter 
Scott in his Minstrelsy of the Border, vol. ii. p. 41 1 . Burns 
remarks, that " it is somewhat singular, that in Lanark, 
Renfrew, Ayr, Wigton, Kirkcudbright, and Dumfries-shires, 
there is scarcely an old song or tune, which, from the title, 
&c. can be guessed to belong to, or be the production of 
these counties. This, I conjecture, is one of these very few, 
as the ballad, which is a long one, is called, both by tradition 
and in printed collections, ' The Lass o' Lochroyan^ which 
I take to be Lochroyan, in Galloway."— if^/ijwes, j?. 196. 



Burns says, " this song is one of the many attempts that 
the Enghsh composers have made to imitate the Scottish 
manner, and which I shall, in these strictures, beg leave to 
distinguish by the appellation of Anglo Scottish productions. 
The music is pretty good, but the verses are just above con- 
tempt."' — See Burns's Reliques. 

If any resemblance can be traced between this melody and 
those of Scotland, it does not, at all events, appear to be very 
striking. For to what genuine Scottish air has there ever 
been a regular recitative prefixed ? The English composer, 
Mr Hook, certainly never meant it should pass for a Scottish 
production, else he would not have displayed his name on 
the original title-page. This song was very popular during 
Mr Tenducci's residence in Scotland, and Johnson, at the 
request of several of his subscribers, was induced to give it an 
early place in his work. The greater part of the first volume 
of the Museum was engraved before Burns and Johnson be- 
came acquainted. 



This Border melody was communicated to the editor by 
Mr Stephen Clarke. Burns mentions, that when he was a 
boy it was a very popular song in Ayrshire, and he has heard 
those fanatics, the Buchanites, sing some of their nonsensical 
rhymes, which they dignified with the name of hymns, to 
this air. These itinerant visionaries were so denominated 
from their leader, Elizabeth Buchan, the wife of one of the 
proprietors of the Delft manufactory at Glasgow, by whom 
she had several children. About 1779 she began to pro- 
phecy, that the day of judgment was at hand, and that all 
Christians ought to abandon their worldly aifairs, and be in 
readiness to meet Christ. She soon gathered a number of 
proselytes, and journeyed with them through several parts of 
Scotland. Whilst in Nithsdale the Buchanites resided in a 
barn, where the women span flax during the day, and re- 


ceived their male visitors at night. The prophetess had as- 
serted, that she was to be translated alive into heaven ; but 
she died in 1791, and her infatuated disciples, after hiding 
her body in a peat-moss, gradually dispersed. In Black- 
wood's Magazine, vol. vi. p. 663, there is a very interesting 
account of these singular enthusiasts. 


" These beautiful verses (says Burns) were the produc- 
tion of Richard Hewit, a young man that Dr Blacklock (to 
'whom I am indebted for the anecdote) kept for some years as 
an amanuensis. I do not know who is the author of the se- 
cond song to the same tune. Tytler, in his amusing History 
of Scottish Music, gives the air to Oswald ; but in Oswald's 
own Collection of Scots Tunes, wherein he affixes an asterisk 
to those he himself composed, he does not make the least 
claim to the tune." 

We have only to add, that Oswald was not the composer 
of the air of Roslyn Castle. The same tune, note for note, 
appears in a prior publication, namely M'Gibbon's Collection 
of Scots Tunes, under the title of the " House of Glams."" 
The old words which had been adapted to this air, however, 
are now lost. The words of both the songs to this air ap- 
peared in Herd's Collection, printed in 1776, and afterwards 
in the collection entitled, St Cecilia, at Edinburgh, in 1779. 



" This song, for genuine humour, and lively originality in 
the air, is unparalleled. I take it to be very old." — Biirns's 

This observation had been hastily made, for the air, either 
when played or sung slowly, as it ought to be, is exceedingly 
pathetic, not lively. Burns afterwards became sensible of 
this; for, in one of his letters to Thomson, inserted in Currie's 
edition of his works, he says, " I enclose you Fraser s set of 
this tune ; when he plays it slow, in fact he makes it the lan- 
guage of despair. Were it |)ossible, in singing, to give it 


half the pathos which Fraser gives it in playing, it would 
make ah admirable pathetic song. I shall here give you two 
stanzas in that style, merely to try if it will be any improve- 


'' Thou hast left me ever, Jamie, 

Thou hast left me ever ; 

Often hast thou vow'd that death 

Only should us sever ; 

Now thou hast left thy lass for ay, 

I must see thee never, Jamie, 

I will see thee never. 

" Thou hast me forsaken, Jamie, 
Thou hast me forsaken ; 
Thou canst love another maid 
While my heart is breaking ; 
Soon my weary eyes I'll close 
Never more to waken, Jamie, 
Never more to waken." 

Mr Thomas Fraser, to whom Burns alludes, was an inti- 
mate acquaintance of the poet, and an excellent musician. 
He still lives, and is at present (1820) the principal oboe con- 
certo player in Edinburgh, of which city he is a native. His 
style of playing the melodies of Scotland is peculiarly chaste 
and masterly. 


This humorous old song was omitted by Ramsay in his 
Tea-table Miscellany, in 1724, although it was quite cur- 
rent in the Border long before his time. Oswald inserted the 
tune, and Herd the words, in their respective collections. The 
following verses to the same air, in the genuine spirit of the 
original, were written by Mrs Scott of Dunbartonshire. 


The grass had nae freedom o' growing. 
As lang as she was nae awa ; 
Nor in the town could there be stowin. 
For wooers that wanted to ca : 
Sic boxin, sic brawlin, sic dancin. 
Sic bowin and shakin a paw. 
The town was for ever in brulziM, 
But now the lassie's awa. 



Woo'd and married and a', 
Married and wood and awa'. 
The dandelie toast o' the parish, 
Is wQo'd and carried awa\ 

But if he had ken'd her as I did, 

His wooin it wad hae been sma ; 

She kens neither bakin nor brewin. 

Nor cardin, nor spinnin ava : 

But a' her skill lies in buskin. 

And O if her braws were awa. 

She soon wad wear out o* the fashion. 

And knit up her buggers wi' straw. 
Woo'd and married, S^c. 

But yesterday I gaed to see her. 

And O she was bonnie and braw ; 

She cried on her gudeman to gie her 

An ell o' red ribban or twa : 

He took and he set down beside her 

A wheelie and reelie to ca' ; 

She cried, " was he that way to guide her," 

And out at the door and awa. 

Woo'd and married, 8^c. 


The road she took was to her mither, 

Wha said, " Lassie, how gaes a' ?" 

Quo she, " Was it for nae ither 

That I was married awa. 

But to be set down to a wheelie. 

And at it for ever to ca' ? 

An' syne to ha'et reel'd by a cheelie^ 

That's everly crying to draw ?" 

Woo'd and married, S^c. 
Her mither said till her, " Hech ! Lassie, 
He's wisest I fear o' the twa ; 
There'll be little to put in the tassie, 
Gif ye be sae backward to draw ; 
For now ye should work like a tyger. 
And at it baith wallop and ca', 
Sae lang's ye hae youdith and vigour. 
An' weanies and debt kept awa. 

Woo'd and married, Sfc. 


" Sae, swith ! awa hame to your haddin, 
Ye're the mair fool for comin awa. 
Ye manna be ilka day gaddin. 
Nor gang sae white finger'd and braw ; 

8 X.— woo'd and married and a'. 

For now wi' a neebor ye're yokit. 
And wi' him should cannily draw ; 
Or else ye deserve to be knockit ; 
So that's an answer for a." 

Wood and married, 8^c, 


Young luckie thus fand hersel' nither'd, 
And wish'd she had ne'er come awa ; 
At length wi' hersel' she consider'd 
That hameward 'twas better to draw. 
And e'en tak her chance o' the landing 
However that matters might fa'. 
Folks manna on frets aye be standing. 
That's woo'd and married and a'. 
Wood and married, S^c. 

Mrs Grant of Laggan wrote an English parody of Mrs 
Scott's song, which Mr G. Thomson has inserted in his Col- 
lection, vol, iii. 



This charming song (says Burns) is much older, and in- 
deed superior to Ramsay's verses, " The Toast," as he calls 
them. There is another set of the words much older still, 
and which I take to be the original one ; but though it has 
a very great deal of merit, it is not quite ladies' reading. The 
original words, for they can scarcely be called verses, are still 
older, and are familiar, from the cradle, to every Scottish ear. 

Saw ye my Maggie, 
Saw ye my Maggie, 
Saw ye my Maggie, 
Linkin o'er the lea ? 
High killed was she. 
High kilted was she. 
High kilted was she. 
Her coat aboon her knee, &c. &c. 

Though it by no means follows, that the silliest verses to 
an air must, for that reason, be the original song ; yet I 
take this ballad, of which I have quoted part, to be the old 
verses. The two songs in Ramsay, one of them evidently 
his own, are never to be met with in the fire-side circle of our 


peasantry, while that which I take to be the old song is in 
every shepherd's mouth. Ramsay, I suppose, had thought 
the old verses unworthy of a place in hi-s Collection. — Burns's 

In Ramsay ""s Tea-table Miscellany we find his song, 
called " The Toast," to the same tune, " Saw ye my 
Peggy r' but he left out both of the old songs under this 
title, to which Burns alludes. The first of these two songs 
is still extant, but the words are not fit to be sung in a draw- 
ing-room. The other, which is likewise older than Ramsay's 
time, was not inserted in any regular collection of Scottish 
songs till that of David Herd in 1769, from whence it was 
copied into Johnson's Museum. The melody, however, is 
inserted in the old manuscript music-book, in the editor's 
possession, before alluded to, and was also printed in the first 
edition of the Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. 

This song was written by Ramsay, who calls it " The 
BoNiJY Scot, to the tune of the Boatman.'''' The old verses, 
which had been adapted to this original Scottish melody, are 
now however supposed to be lost. There is a striking co- 
incidence in several bars, between this air and that of 
" Nancy's to the Greenwood gane." Perhaps they were both 
composed by the same minstrel. Thomson pubhshed Ram- 
say's verses to the tune of " The Boatman," in his Orpheus 
Caledonius, in 1725. The same melody appears in Craig's 
Collection, A. D. 1730, and several subsequent musical publi- 


This song, from intrinsic evidence, is not very ancient. It 
is neither to be found in Ramsay's Miscellany, the Orpheus 
Caledonius, nor in Craig or Macgibbon's Collections ; but 
both of them are inserted in a collection of songs called, 
" The Muses' Delight,'''' printed and sold by John Sadler, 
Liverpool, 1754. In this work it is entitled, " The Flower 


of Edinburgh, set by Signor D. Rizzio." Oswald has a copj 
of the air in his Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. iii. 
printed in 1742 ; and the words appear in Herd's collection, 
who has used some liberty with the original, though his al- 
terations are neither numerous nor important. The Liver- 
pool editor is unquestionably erroneous in ascribing the me- 
lody to Rizzio, for there is reason to believe, that it was com- 
posed subsequent to the year 1700. Indeed the editor is 
creditably informed, that the tune only became a fashionable 
' Scottish measure (a sort of hornpipe so called) about the year 

^ /'■ 1740; and that it was subsequent to this period when the 

verses appeared by an anonymous hand. 

Burns says, that this song " is one of the many effusions 
of Jacobitism. The title, Flowers of Edinburgh, has no 
manner of connexion with the present verses, so I suspect 
there has been on older set of words, of which the title is all 
that remains." — Vide Ms Reliques. 

The grounds our poet had for conjecturing that this song 
was a Jacobite effusion, do not appear to be sufficiently plain. 
No such song as the one alluded to is known to exist. Sub- 
sequent to the year 1745, indeed, there was a Jacobite ballad, 
which was frequently sung to this air, beginning, 

To your ai-ms, to your arms, my bonny Highland lads ! 
To your arms, to your arms at the touk o' the drum ! 
The battle-trumpet sounds, put on your white cockades. 
For Charlie, the great Prince Regent, is come. 

But this ballad, which may be seen in Hogg's Jacobite 
Reliques, has no allusion whatever to The Flowers ofEdin- 
hurgh. It seems more likely that the composer of this Scotch 
measure had given it the name in compliment to the young 
ladies of the Scottish metropolis, who were then attending the 
dancing schools. 

Burns further observes, that " it is singular enough, that 
the Scottish muses were all Jacobites. I have paid more 
attention to every description of Scots songs than perhaps 
any body living has done, and I do not recollect one single 


Stanza, nor even the title of the most trifling Scots air, which 
has the least panegyrical reference to the families of Nassau 
or Brunswick ; while there are hundreds satirizing them. 
This may be thought no panegyric on the Scots poets, but I 
mean it as such. For myself, I would always take it as a 
compliment to have it said, that my heart ran before my 
head ; and surely the gallant though unfortunate house of 
Stuart, the kings of our fathers for so many heroic ages, is a 
theme much more interesting than * * * » 

Our poet's heart certainly hurried him, on some occasions, 
too fast for his head ; for there were many songs composed in 
Scotland at the time, diametrically opposite to Jacobitism. 
The three following, excerpted from a MSS. collection of 
loyal songs, composed for the use of the Revolution Club, 
part of which was afterwards printed at Edinburgh, by A. 
Donaldson and J. Reid, in 1761, may not be unacceptable as 
counter specimens. 


When you came over first frae France, 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie, 
You swore to lead our king a dance. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie; 
And promis'd on your royal word. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie, 
To mak the Duke dance o'er the sword. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie. 

Whan he to you began to play. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 
You quat the green and ran away. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie ; 
The dance thus turn'd into a chace. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 
It must be own'd you wan the race. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie, 

Your partners that came o'er frae France, 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie, 
They understood not a Scots dance. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie; 


Therefore, their complaisance to shew. 

Bonny laddie, Highland laddie. 
Unto our Duke they bow'd right low. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 


If e'er you come to dance again, 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 
New dancers you must bring frae Spain, 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie ; 
And, that all things may be secure. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 
See that your dancers be not poor, 

Bonnie laddie. Highland laddie. 


I think insurance you should make. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 
Lest dancing you should break your neck. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie ; 
For he that dances on a rope, 

Bonnie laddie. Highland laddie. 
Should not trust aU unto the Pope, 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie, 


For dancing you were never made. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie ; 
Then, while 'tis time, leave off the trade. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie ; 
Be thankful for your last escape. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie, 
And, like your brother,* take a cap. 

Bonny laddie. Highland laddie. 


To the Tune of " Lilli Bullero." 
O Brother Sandie, hear ye the news ? 

Lilli bullero, hullen a la, 
An army's just coming without any shoes. 
Lilli bulle7'0, bullen a la. 

To arms, to arms, brave boys to arms ! 
A true British cause for your courage doth call ; 
Court, countiy, and city, against a banditti. 
Lulli bullero, bullen a la. 

The Pope sends us over a bonny young lad, ; 

Lilli bullero, ^c. 

* Cardinal York, brother of Charles, and second son of James, deno- 
minated " the Pretender." 


Who, to court British favour, wears a Highland plaid. 
Lilli bullero, S^c. 

To arms, to arms, &c. 

A protestant church from Rome doth advance, 

Lilli bullero, <Sfc. 
And, what is more rare, it brings freedom from France, 
Lilli bullero, &;c. 

To arms, to arms, &c 


If this shall surprise you, there's news strangeryet, 

Lilli bullero, Sfc. 
He brings Highland money to pay British debt. 

Lilli bullero, §'c. 

To arms, to arms, &c. 


You must take it in coin, which the country affords, 

Lilli bullero, S)C. 
Instead of broad pieces, he pays with broad swords. 

Lilli bullero, S^c. 

To arms, to arms, &c 


And sure this is paying you in the best ore ? 

Lilli bullero, S^c. 
For who once is thus paid, will never want more. 

Lilli bullero, S^c. 

To anns, to arms, &c. 

TcNE " The Nun and Abbess." 

Great William of Nassau, who sav'd us from Rome, 
Being born to make happy the ages to come. 
First, by his sword, he rescu'd our cause. 
And thereafter, for ever, secur'd it by laws. 

To prevent the surrender of Sovereign pow'r 
To one who had sworn it away to the whore. 
He settled, the crown on the Hanover line. 
And defeated that right which some rogues call divine. 

May the Palatine race, who have ventur'd and lost. 
For their country and God, be repayed their cost. 
In a vast long train of generous blood. 
On our throne, till 'tis ask'd where London has stood. 

Many similar anti-jacobite songs might be quoted, but 
these may suffice. Before concluding this long article, it 


may be proper to state that Burns himself wrote two pretty 
stanzas to the tune of the Flowers of Edinburgh. They are 
as follow : 


Here is the glen, and here the bower. 
All underneath the birchen shade ; 
The village bell has toU'd the hour, 
what can stay my lovely maid ! 
'Tis not Maria's whispering call ; — 
'Tis but the balmy, breathing gale, 
Mixt with some warbler's dying fall. 
The dewy star of eve to hail. 

It is Maria's voice I hear ! 
So calls the woodlark in the grove. 
His little faithful mate to cheer, — 
At once 'tis music — and tis love ! 
And art thou come, and art thou true ! 
O welcome dear to love and me ! 
And let us all our vows renew 
Along the flowery banks of Cree* 


The author of the words of this song is unknown, but 
the music is the composition of Mr Berg. This song was 
originally entitled, " The Happy Meeting," and was fre- 
quently sung at Ranelagh, with considerable applause. It 
is printed in the " London Songster," forW. Nicoll, St Paul's 
Church-yard, London 1767, and afterwards by Herd in 1776. 
Burns, in his Reliques, observes, " that it is a tolerable Anglo- 
Scottish piece." 



'^ This song was collected and pubhshed by Charles Wil- 
son in his " St Cecilia, or Harmonious Companion," publish- 
ed in 1779- The melody is uncommonly pretty, and is much 
in the style of Mr James Hook's Anglo Scottish productions. J 
We do not know, however, that it is actually his. Mr Jo- ^ 

The name of- a small river, on the west toast of Seotland. 


seph Dale published the same song with introductory and 
concluding symphonies, under the title of " Absent Jockey," 
in the second volume of Scottish songs ; but he has not fa- 
voured us with the name either of the author or of the com- 

This air is very ancient, but the precise era of its composi- 
tion is unknown ; but it is at least as old as the reign of 
Queen Mary, as it is inserted in a MS. music book written 
in the old notation or tableture for the lute, about the begin- 
ning of the reign of her son and successor James VI. This 
fine old tune had remained very long a favourite in England, 
for about the beginning of last century, it was adapted to an 
English song beginning, " How can they taste of joys or grief ; 
Who beauty's powers did never prove. Mr Gay also select- 
ed it as a melody for one of his songs in his " Musical Opera 
of Achilles," beginning, " Think what anguish," which was 
performed at Covent Garden in 1733, after the author''s de- 
cease. This song was sung by Miss Norsa, in the character 
of Deidamia. Thomson published this tune to Ramsay's 
verses in his Orpheus Caledonius in 1725, and Watts re- 
printed both in his Musical Miscellany, vol. v. London, 
1731. Burns observes, " it is self-evident that the first four 
lines of this song are part of a song far more ancient than 
Ramsay's beautiful verses wl^ich are annexed to then. As 
music is the language of nature, and poetry, particularly 
songs, are always less or mor6 localized (if I may be allowed / / 
the verb), by some of the modifications of time and place, 
this is the reason why so many of our Scots airs have out- 
lived their original, and perhaps many subsequent sets of 
verses ; except a single name, or phrase, or sometimes one or 
two lines, simply to distinguish the tunes by. To this day, 
among people who know nothing of Ramsay's verses, the 
following is the song, and all the song that I ever heard :"— 


" Gin ye meet a bonnie lassie, 
Gie her a kiss and let her gae ; 
But gin ye meet a dirty hizzie, 
Fye, gar rub her o'er wi' strae. 

Fye, gae rub her, rub her, rub her, 

Fye, gae rub her o'er wi' strae ; 

And gin ye meet a dirty hizzie, 

Fye, gae rub her o'er wi' strae." 

Burns s Reliques. 
The song, as it is inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius, 
Johnson's M useum, and other collections, is an abridgment of 
Ramsay's spirited imitation of the " Vides ut alta stet nive can- 
didum^'' of Horace, which Lord Woodhouselee considered as 
one of the happiest efforts of the author's genius. The read- 
er is here presented with a complete copy of this elegant poem. 

Look up to Pentland's tow'ring tap, 
Bury'd beneath great wreaths of snaw, 
O'er ilka cleugh, ilk scar and slap. 
As high as ony Roman wa'. 

Driving their baws frae whins or tee. 
There are nae gowfers to be seen ; 
Nor dowsser fowk wysing a-jee 
The byass-bouls on Tamson's green. 

Then fling on coals and ripe the ribs. 
And beek the house baith butt and ben ; 
That mutchkin stoup it bauds but dribs, 
Thea let's get in the tappit hen. 

Good claret best keeps out the cauld. 
And drives away the winter soon ; 
It makes a man baith gash and bauld. 
And heaves his saul beyond the moon. 

Leave to the gods your ilka care ; 
If that they think us worth theit while. 
They can a rowth of blessings spare. 
Which will our fashious fears beguile. 

For what they have a mind to do. 
That will they do should we gang wud ; 
If they command the storms to blaw. 
Then upo' sight the hailstones thud. 

But soon as ere they cry, " Be quiet," 
The blattering winds dare nae mair move. 
But cour into their caves, and wait 
The high command of supreme Jove. 



Let niest day come as it thinks fit. 
The present minute's only ours : 
On pleasure let's employ our wit. 
And laugh at Fortune's fickle powers. 

Be sure ye dinna quit the grip 
Of ilka joy when ye are young. 
Before auld age your vitals nip. 
And lay ye twafald o'er a rung. 

Sweet youth's a blyth and heartsome time ; 
Then lads and lasses, while its May, 
Gae pou the gowan in its prime. 
Before it wither and decay. 

Watch the saft minute of delight. 
When Jenny speaks beneath her breath. 
And kisses, laying a' the wyte 
On you, if she kepp ony skaith. 

" Haith, ye're ill-bred," she'll smiling say ; 
" Ye'U worry me, ye greedy rook ;" 
Syne frae your arms she'll run away. 
And hide hersel' in some dark nook. 

Her laugh will lead you to the place 
Where lies the happiness j^ou want. 
And plainly tells you to your face, 
Nineteen nay-says are half a grant. 

Now to her heaving bosom cling. 
And sweetly toolie for a kiss ; 
Frae her fair finger whop a ring. 
As taiken of a future bUss, 

These benisons, I'm very sure. 
Are of the Gods' indulgent grant ; 
Then, surly carles, whist, forbear 
To plague us wi' your whining cant. 

The ingenious reader will easily perceive, that the song of 
" Fye gar rub her o'er wi"" strae"" is composed of the first four 
old lines mentioned by Burns, and the seven concluding verses 
of Ramsay's spirited and elegant Scottish version of Horace's 
9th Ode. Ad Thaliarchum. 

The other verses to the same tune in the Museum, begin- 
ning, " Dear Roger, if your Jenny geek," are likewise by 
Ramsay, and were introduced as one of the songs in his Gentle 





This tune is inserted in Mrs Crockat's Music Book, with 

many other old Scottish airs, in 1 709 ; but, in all probability, 

it is fully a century older ; for Ramsay, who was born in 

1684, gives it as an ancient tune. Ramsay wrote new verses 

to it, beginning, Pained with her slighting Jamie's love, and 

published them in 1724. They afterwards appeared with the 

music in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. The original 

verses to this air, in three eight-line stanzas, are well known— 

they have merit as to humour, but they are, as Burns justly 

remarks, rather unfit for insertion. The old song begins, 

The bonnie lass of Livingston, 
Her name ye ken, her name ye ken; 
And she has written in her contract 
To lie her lane, to lie her lane. 
&c. &c. &c. 



This air is of undoubted antiquity. Burns says, that 
" Ramsay found the first line of this song, which had been 
preserved as the title of the charming air, and then composed 
the rest of the verses to suit that line. This has always a 
finer effect than composing English words, or words with an 
idea foreign to the spirit of the old title. When old titles of 
songs convey any idea at all, they will generally be found to 
be quite in the spirit of the air." — Burns's Reliques. 

This conjecture of Burns turns out to be amazingly cor- 
rect. In the Advocates' Library, Edinburgh, there are six 
MSS Collections of old Scottish tunes, which had belonged to 
Sir John Skene, who published the Acts of the Scots Parlia- 
ment, with a treatise De verhorum sig?it/icatione, in 1597. 
These MSS, now bound in one volume, bear Sir John's sig- 
nature, and were probably compiled when he was a very 
young man. They were presented a considerable time ago 
to that Library, along with several other MSS, by one of Sir 
John's descendants. In these Collections, the identical tune 



of " The last time I came o'er the moor" occurs no less than 
twice, and one of the sets commences with the two first lines 
of the old song. 

" Alace ! that I came o'er the moor 
" And left my love beliind me." 

Burns, in one of his letters to Mr Thomson concerning this 
song, says, " there are several lines in it which are beautiful, 
but, in my opinion — pardon me, revered shade of Ramsay ! 
the song is unworthy of the divine air." Burns, although he 
did not altogether like Ramsay's song, seems, nevertheless, to 
have felt an aversion to alter it. In another letter, addressed 
to the same gentleman, he proceeds, " Ramsay, as every 
other poet, has not been always equally happy in his pieces ; 
still I cannot approve of taking such liberties with an author 
as Mr W- proposes doing with The last time I came o'er 
the moor. Let a poet, if he chooses, take up the idea of ano- 
ther, and work it into a piece of his own ; but to mangle the 
works of a poor bard, whose tuneful tongue is now mute for 
ever in the dark and narrow house — by Heaven, 'twould be 
sacrilege ! I grant that Mr W's version is an improvement, 
but let him mend the song as the Highlander mended his 
gun — he gave it a ne w stock^^ a new lock, and a newjmvrel^ 


This elegant song, beginning, How blest has my time been, 
•what joys have I Jcnown, is not a Scottish production. It was 
written by Mr Edward Moore, author of Fables for the 
Female Sex, The Gamester, a tragedy, and other esteemed 
works. In this song, Mr Moore has not only exhibited a 
charming picture of real domestic happiness, but has likewise 
paid a delicate compliment to the amiable virtues of his wife. 
This lady, whose name was Janet Hamilton, was a daughter 
of Mr Hamilton, table-decker to the princesses. She had 
also a poetical turn, and is said to have assisted her husband 
in writing his tragedy. One specimen of her poetry was 
handed about before their marriage, and afterwards appeared 


in The Gentleman's Magazine, 174-9, page 192. It was ad- 
dressed to a daughter of the famous Stephen Duck, and be- 
ghis with the following stanza : 

You will tliink it, my Duck, for the fault I must own. 

Your Jessy, at last, is quite covetous grown ; 

Though millions if fortune should lavisUy pour 

I still should be wretched if I had not More. 
After playing on his name with great delicacy and ingenuity 
throuo-h half a dozen of other stanzas, she thus concludes : 

You will wonder, my girl, who this dear one can be. 
Whose merit can boast such a conquest as me ; 
But you shan't know his name, though I told you before 
It begins with an M ; but I dare not say More, 
Mr Moore's works were printed in one volume, 4to. in 
1756. He died a few months thereafter, viz. on 28th Feb- 
ruary 1757. 



Her maiden name, as we learn from the Statistical Ac- 
count of Scotland, was Anderson, the only daughter and le- 
gitimate child of John Anderson, Esq. of Patie's Mill, in the 
parish of Keith-hall, and county of Aberdeen. Her father, 
who generally went by the name of BlacJc John Anderson, 
was likewise proprietor of the estates of Tullikearie in the 
parish of Fintray, and Standing-stones in the parish of Dyce. 
From her uncommon beauty, accomplishments, and prospect 
of a large fortune, she had many admirers. Mr Sangster, 
then Laird of Boddom, in attempting clandestinely to carry 
the young lady off about the year 1550, was discovered by a 
dog, and received a very rough chastisement from her father. 
The disappointed lover, in revenge, wrote an ill-natured song, 
of which her great-grandson, born in 1703, and now living 
(in 1791) remembers these words, 

Ye'U tell the gowk that gets her. 
He gets but my auld sheen. 

A more favoured lover composed a song to her praise, the 

air of which only is now preserved. His name, likewise, was 

Anderson. On this gentleman she bestowed her fair hand. 


and had several children by him. Having survived her first 
husband, she was afterwards married to a Mr James George, 
to whom she also bore a family. Like many other beauties, 
she was latterly very unfortunate. Her father having killed 
a man in the burgh of Inverurie, fled to Orkney, where his 
maternal uncle was bishop. His flight — the derangement of 
his affairs during his absence — and the expence of procuring 
a pardon, ruined his estate. Several of the descendants of 
this celebrated beauty reside in the parish of Keith-hall, and 
the adjacent districts of that part of the country. 

Allan Ramsay adapted his modern words to the old melo- 
dy, and transferred the heroine of his muse to the parish of 
Galston in the county of Air, where a mill with a similar 
name Avas existing. Burns gives us the followinor account of 
this translocation, upon the authority of Sir William Cun- 
ningham of Robertland, Baronet, to whom the anecdote was 
communicated by the late John, Earl of Loudon. " The 
then Earl of Loudon, father of Earl John before-mentioned, 
had Ramsay at London, and one day walking together by 
the banks of Irvine-water, near New-mills, at a place yet 
called Patie''s Mill, they were struck with the appearance of a 
beautiful country girl. His lordship observed, that she 
would be a fine theme for a song. Allan lagged behind in 
returning to Loudon-castle, and at dinner produced this 
identical song." — Burns' s Rellques. 

Ritson says, that Ramsay's Lass of Patie's Mill, and some 
others, must be allowed equal to any, and even, in point of 
pastoral simplicity, superior to most lyric productions, either 
in the Scottish or any other language. The second verse is 
omitted in Mr George Thomson's Collection, probably from 
an idea that the imagery was somewhat too warm. Ram- 
say's verses appear in the Orpheus Caledonius ; but the air, 
as has been shewn, is at least as old as the middle of the six- 
teenth century. 


The two songs in the Museum, viz. the first beginning, 
The Lawland lads thinJc they are fine, and the other, The 
Lawland maids gang trig and fine, were both written by 
Ramsay, and published by him in his Tea-Table Miscellany 
in 1724. With regard to the tune, it is very ancient; a set 
of it appears in a manuscript collection of airs in 1687. It ori- 
ginally consisted of no more than one strain of eight bars, and 
was copied in this primitive state, adapted to Ramsay's verses, 
in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. The ancient words to 
the tune are now lost, and Jthe second part or strain of this 
tune is a modern interpolation. 


X This beautiful melody was composed, by the celebrated Dr 
Arne, to an English version of Ramsay's Highland Lassie. 
Both words and music are printed in the Muses'' Delight, p. 
66, Liverpool, 1754. The second set of verses, beginning. 
Ah ! sure a pair was never seen, also adapted to Dr Arne's 
tune, was written by R. B. Sheridan, Esq. and introduced 
as a song in his musical opera of the Duenna, acted at Drury 
Lane in 1775. 

This truly comic ballad, beginning, Hersell he High- 
land shentleman, by an anonymous author, does not ap- 
pear either in the Tea-Table Miscellany or the Orpheus 
Caledonius. It is preserved, however, in Herd's Collection 
of 1769, with another ballad in the same style to the tune 
of, " Had awa frae me, Donald," probably by the same 
hand. From its excellent broad humour, and the ludicrous 
specimen of a Highlander's broken English, it has long been 
a popular favourite in the lower districts of Scotland. It is 
adapted to the ancient air of " Clout the Caldron," of which 
tradition relates, that the second Bishop Chisholm of Dun- 
blane used to say, that if he were going to be hanged, no- 


thing would sooth him so much as to hear this tune played 
by the way. 

In the Museum one stanza has been left out, apparently 
from want of room. It should be placed between the 9th 
and 10th stanzas. It is as follows : 

Tey tak the horse ten by the head. 

And tere tey make her stand, man ; 

Me tell tern, me hae seen te day, 

Tey had nae sic command, man. 
The old song, beginning, " Have you ony pats or pans," 
may be seen in the Tea-table Miscellany, and the Orpheus 
Caledonius, 1725. Burns observes, that " the air is also 
known by the name of the Blacksmith and his apron, which, 
from the rhythm seems to have been a line of some old song 
to the same tune." — Reliques. 


Both the air and words of this Anglo-Scottish song, be- 
ginning, My Jocky is the hlythest lad, are comparatively mo- 
dern. It came out about the year 1769, and was inserted in 
the first edition of Horsfield's Songster's Companion, 2 vols 
12mo. London, 1770. The first set of verses in the Museum 
are slightly altered from the copy in Horsfield's Collection, 
and in Wilson's Cecilia, published in 1779- The other verses 
to the same tune, beginning. To Jly like bird from grove to 
grove, are pretty ; but their author is yet anonymous. They 
were also taken from Horsfield's Songster, Vol. II. p. 2^0. 

These verses, with the exception of the first line, which 
is the title of the old tune, are wholly by Ramsay. They 
appeared in his Tea-Table Miscellany in 1724, and again in 
1725, along with the music in the Orpheus Caledonius. 
About the year 1790, Burns was so fortunate as to recover 
some fine original verses of the older ballad, as he himself 
informs us, from an old man's singing them to him. He af- 
terwards communicated them to the editor of the Museum, 


to Mrs Dunlop, and to Mr George Thomson. Burns speaks 
with rapture of this recovery. In a letter to Mrs Dunlop, he 
says, " Hght be the turf on the breast of the Heaven-inspired 
poet who composed this glorious fragment ! There is more 
of the fire of native genius in it than in half a dozen of modern 
English bacchanahans." The reader will find this fine old 
fragment in the fifth volume of the Scots Musical Museum, p. 
426, where it is set to the original Lowland air of Auld lang- 
syne. It has since been published by Mr George Thom- 
son, in his Collection of Scottish Songs, adapted to a very 
beautiful and more modern air, now generally known by the 
name of Sir Alexander Doti's Strathspey. This latter tune 
has nearly superseded the old air, as the verses are now sel- 
dom, if ever, sung to any other. The history of this air is 
somewhat curious. Mr William Shield, in his overture to 
Rosina, acted at Covent Garden in 1783, introduced into 
this overture two strains of an old Scottish strathspey, slightly 
altered, entitled, " The Millers Daughter." Some years 
thereafter, Mr Gow published Shield's copy of the tune in his 
Collection of Reels and Strathspeys ; and, in compliment to 
the late worthy Baronet of Newton Don, gave it the name of 
Sir Alexander Don's Strathspey. The late Sir Alexander 
Don was an excellent musical amateur, and some persons, 
from this circumstance, have been erroneously led to ima- 
gine that he was the composer of the air. 



Theke are two sets of verses in the Museum, both of 
Avhich are adapted to the tune of Jockey'' s gray hreelcs. With 
regard to the melody. Burns observes, that " though it has 
certainly evei-y evidence of being a Scottish air, yet there is a 
well-knoAvn tune in the north of Ireland, called the ' Wearoer 
and his Shuttle, O,' which, though sung much quicker, is 
every note the very tune.'"'— Eeliques. 

The old slow Scottish air, which is in triple time, is pre- 
served in Oswald's Collection, Vol. II. p. 32. Oswald him- 


self, although he lays no claim to it, it is believed, composed 
the more modern tune in common time, and inserted it in 
the same collection, which first appeared in 1742, conse- 
quently the tune adapted to the verses in the Museum, as 
well as to the song of " The Weaver and his Shuttle,"" can- 
not be many years anterior to that date. Oswald, however, 
borrowed the subject of his air from the older melody. Every 
musician knows how easy a matter it is to change a tune from 
triple to common time, and vice versa, though, to an unex- 
perienced ear, the air might seem totally different. 

This tune appears to have been highly relished by our 
poet, for in a subsequent part of his remarks, he says, that 
" to sing so beautiful an air to such execrable verses is down- 
right (prostitution) of common sense. The Scots verses," he 
adds, " are indeed tolerable." — Reliqices. Burns, however, is 
certainly too severe in his strictures on the harmless effusions 
of this anonymous " Gentle Swain," whose verses indeed, 
though far short of sublimity, do not seem to merit the harsh 
epithet of execrable. The other set of verses, to which the 
poet alludes, beginning, " Jenny's heart Avas frank and free," 
and which, he admits, are tolerable, was written by Mr 
Mayne, formerly of Glasgow, who likewise composed some 
beautiful verses to the tune of " Logan Water," Mr Mayne 
is also the author of the Siller Gun, and several other pieces 
of considerable poetical merit. 

As this melody was a particular favourite of Burns, he did 
not permit it to slip away unwedded to his muse. The fol- 
lowing beautiful stanzas were accordingly composed by him, 
which are admirably suited to the air. They appear in Mr 
Thomson's Collection, p. 108, under the title of 


'TwAS even, — the dewy fields were green. 
On every blade the pearls hung ; 
The zephyr wanton'd round the bean. 
And bore its fragrant sweets along ! 


In ev'ry glen the mavis sang. 
All nature list'ning seem'd the while. 
Except where green-wood echoes rang 
Amang the braes o' Ballochmyle. 

With careless steps I onward stray 'd. 
My heart rejoic'd in nature's joy. 
When, musing in a lonely glade, 
A maiden fair I chanc'd to spy : 
Her look was like the morning's eye. 
Her air like nature's vernal smile ; 
The lily's hue and rose's dye 
Proclaim'd the lass o' Ballochmyle. 

Fair is the morn in flowery May, 
And sweet is night in autumn mild. 
When roving through the garden gay. 
Or wand' ring in the lonely wild : 
But woman, nature's darling child. 
There all her charms she does compile ; 
Even there her other works are foil'd 
By the bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 


O had she been a country maid. 
And I the happy country swain, 
Tho' shelter'd in the lowest shed 
That ever rose on Scotland's plain ! 
Through weary winter's wind and rain. 
With joy, with rapture, I would toil. 
And nightly to my bosom strain 
The bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 


Then pride might climb the slipp'ry steep. 
Where fame and honours lofty shine. 
And thirst of gold might tempt the deep. 
Or downward seek the Indian mine : 
Give me the cot below the pine. 
To tend the flocks or till the soil. 
And every day has joys divine 
With the bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 

The older set of verses to the same air, which Johnson, 
from an unaccountable fastidiousness, had rejected, are not 
destitute of merit. These artless strains are still sung in 
Scotland at every country fire- side, and it now becomes a 
matter of justice to restore them. 


When I was in my se'enteenth year 
I was baitli blythe and bonnie, O ; 
The lads loo'd me baith far and near. 
But I loo'd nane but Johnny^ 0. 
He gained my heart in twa three weeks. 
He spak sae blythe and kindly, O ; 
And I made him new grey breeks 
That fitted him most finely, O. 

He was a handsome fellow, 
His humour was baith frank and free; 
His bonny lockS;, sae yellow. 
Like gowd they glitter'd in my ee ; — 
His dimpl'd chin and rosy cheeks, 
And face so fair and ruddy, ; 
And then a day his grey breeks 
Were neither auld nor duddy, 0. 

But now they are quite thread-bare worn. 
And wider than they used to be ; 
They're a' tash'd-like and unco torn. 
And clouted sair on Uka knee : 
But gin I had a simmer's day. 
As I hae had right mony, O, 
I'll make a web o' new grey. 
To be breeks to my Johnny, 0. 


For he's weel wordy o' them. 
And better than I hae to gie ; 
But I'll take pains upo' them. 
And strive frae faults to keep them free. 
To dead him weel shall be my care. 
And please him a' my study, O ; 
But he maun wear the auld pair 
Awee, tho' they be duddy, 0. 

I have seen two additional stanzas to the song, but they 
appear to be the production of a different and very inferior 
pen ; they are hkewise coarse, and inadmissible on the score 
of delicacy. 



" This song, says Burns, is an Anglo- Scottish production, 

but by no means a bad one."" — Reliques. This beautiful 

melody, to which the verses are set, is the composition of 


Sig. Thomaso Giordani, a native of Italy. It was originally 
adapted to a French song, beginning, Lison dormoit dans un 
boccage, of which the stanzas in the Museum are an English 
version, and possess no small share of elegance and pastoral 
simplicity. This fine air was arranged as a lesson for the 
piano-forte or harpsichord, by the celebrated Wolfang Ama- 
deus Mozart, and it has been very much and very deservedly 
admired by all who have heard it. 



This song is of considerable antiquity. It is inserted in a 
musical manuscript, written about 1680. An imperfect copy 
of the tune and words afterwards found their way into Henry 
Playford's Mirtli and Wit, first edition, in 1698. The two 
middle stanzas are omitted in Playford's copy, and he has 
also taken some liberties with the air. Both of these, how- 
ever, are restored to their original state in the Museum. In 
1773, Mr James Hook of London set the same verses to an 
air of his own composition, which was sung at Vauxhall Gar- 
dens that year with applause. /; 


This song was written by Ramsay, and published by him in 
his Tea-Table Miscellany, in 1724, to the old tune of Bessie's 
haggis, which, from the title, would seem to have been a 
very humorous old Scottish song, now supposed to be lost. 
Ilamsay''s words, adapted to the music, appear in the Orpheus 
Caledonius in 1725. About the year 1745, a Jacobite parody 
of the old song came into vogue. It began, 

Ken ye wha supped Bessy's haggles ? 

Ken ye wha diimer'd on our Bessy's haggles ? 

Four good lords and three bonny ladies^ 

A' to dinner on our Bessy's haggles. 

Ae gude chief wi' his gear and his glaumrie. 

Lords on the bed and Dukes In the aumrie ; 

There was a khig's son cover'd o'er wi' raggies, 

A' for to dinner on our Bessy's haggles. 


This song is inserted at large in Hogg's Jacobite Reliques, 
vol. ii. p. 191, et seq. 



I KEMEMBEK an old lady who sang these verses to a very- 
plaintive and simple air in slow treble time, a copy of which, 
but corrupted with embellishments, appears in Oswald's Col- 
lection, No 12, under the title of " The lassie lost her silken 
snood." Napier, who first published the song, being unac- 
quainted, perhaps, with the original melody, adapted the 
verses to the same air which is inserted in Johnson's Mu- 
suem. This song, though undoubtedly of considerable anti- 
quity, is neither to be found in the Orpheus Caledonius, nor 
in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany. 



Burns observes, that " it is too bare-faced to take Dr 
Percy's charming song, and by the means of transposing a 
few English words into Scots, to offer it to pass for a Scots 
^ ^song. I was not unacquainted with the editor until the first 
volume was nearly finished, else, had I known in time, I 
would have prevented such an impudent absurdity" — Re- 
liques. These remarks are equally true and candid ; yet it 
may not be improper to observe, that even Bishop Percy, when 
he Avrote these elegant verses, might have had in view the 
Scottish song inserted in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, en- 
titled, " The young Laird and Edinburgh Kate." The 
structure of the stanza in both songs is exactly alike, and one 
cannot but remark, that the Bishop's song commences in 
words nearly similar to the second stanza of the other. 

Old Song, verse 2d. 

Katy wiltu gang wi me. 
And leave the dinsonne town awhile ; 
The blossom's sprouthig from the tree. 
And a' the simmer's gawn to smile. 



The Bishop's song begins, 

O Nancy, wilt thou go with me, 
Nor sigh to leave the flaunting town ? 
Can silent glens have charms for thee. 
The lowly cot and russet gown ? 

But, be this as it may, it must be admitted that the Bishop''s 
verses, which were adapted to a beautiful air, composed by 
Mr Thomas Carter, and sung by Mr Vernon at Vauxhail in 
1773, form one of the most successful imitations of the Scottish 
pastoral ballad which has ever yet appeared on the south side 
of the Tweed. This beautiful Anglo-Scottish song is here 
presented to the reader. 

Words hj Bishop PERcr. Music hy Mr Thomas Carter. 1773. 

/^-^ H. 

Oh, Nan-cy, wilt thou go with me. Nor sigh to leave the 




silk - en sheen^ No long- - er deck'd with jew - els rare ; 




Ifeg p -CXfeg ga Sr^^^ P^ 

Say, canst thou quit each court - ly scene. Where thou wert 

Iq p P- r 0- 








fair - est of the fair ? Say, canst thou quit each 



courtly scene. Where thou wert fairest of the fair? Where 



thou wert fairest. Where thou wert fairest. Where 
I I t f » I I I 



This artless melody of one strain, in the minor mode, car- 
ries with it every mark of antiquity, and the pretty verses in 
the Museum are admirably adapted to the air. Kelly, who 
published his Scottish Proverbs in 1721, tells us, it was then 
an old song. In Yair''s Charmers^ however, printed 1749, 
there appears another version of the same song, which is di- 
rected to be suns to the tune of " Dunbarton Drums." As 
the latter version has been copied both by Herd and Ritson 
in their respective collections, it is here annexed. 


When I think on this warld's pelf. 

And how little I hae o't to myself; 

I sigh when I look on my thread-bare coat. 

And shame fa' the gear and the bagrie o't. 

Johnny was the lad that held the plough. 
But now he has goud and gear enough ; 
I weel mind the day when he wasna worth a groat. 
And shame fa', &c. 

Jenny was the lass that mucked the byre. 
But now she goes in her silken attire; 
And she was a lass who wore a plaiden coat. 
And shame fa', &c. 


Yet a' this shall never daunton me, 

Sae lang's I keep my fancy free ; 

While I've but a penny to pay t'other pot, 

May the deil tak the gear and the bagrie o't.* 

Burns says, " the following is a set of this song, which was 

the earliest I remember to have got by heart. When a 

child, an old woman sung it to me, and I picked it up, every 

word, at first hearing." 

O Willie weel I mind I lent you my hand. 
To sing you a song which you did me comniand ; 
But my memory's so bad, I had almost forgot. 
That you called it the gear and the blaithrie o't. 

* " Shame fa the gear and the lladry o't," says Kelly, is the turn of an old 
Scottish song, spoken when a young handsome girl marries an old man upon ac- 
count of his wealth." — Scots Proverbs, page 296. It would, therefore, seem, that 
the version in the Museum is the older of the two. 


I'll not sing about confusion, delusion, or pride, 
I'll sing about a laddie was for a virtuous bride ; 
For virtue is an ornament that time will never rot. 
And preferable to gear and the blaithrie o't. 

Tho* my lassie has nae scarlets nor silks to put on. 
We envy not the greatest that sits upon the throne ; 
I wad rather hae my lassie, tho' she came in her smock. 
Than a princess wi' the gear and the blaithrie o't. 


Tho' we hae nae horses nor menzie at command. 

We will toil on our foot, and we'll work wi' our hand j 

And when wearied without rest, we'll find it sweet in any spot. 

And we'll value not the gear and the blaithrie o't. 


If we hae ony babies, we'll count them as lent ; 
Hae we less, hae we mair, we will aye be content ; 
For they say they hae mair pleasure that wins but a groat. 
Than the miser wi' his gear and the blaithrie o't. 


I'll not meddle wi' th' affairs o' the kirk or the queen. 
They're nae matters for a sang, let them sink, let them swim; 
On your kirk I'll ne'er encroach, but I'll hold it still remote, 
Sae tak this for the gear and the blaithrie o't. 

Vide Reliques. 

As the last stanza speaks of meddling with the affairs of 
the hirk or the queen, it is probable that the verses recover- 
ed by Burns were written in the time of Queen Anne, per- 
haps about the year 1710. 

Oswald added a second strain to this very ancient tune, 
which is printed in the fifth volume of his Pocket Compa- 
nion, page 23, under the title of " Deil take the gear ;" but it 
is quite unsuitable for the ordinary compass of the human 
voice, being almost a repetition of the first strain, set an oc- 
tave higher. 



In Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany these truly comic 

verses are directed to be sung to the old air of " Dainty 

Davie. '''' They are accordingly adapted to this tune in the 

Museum. The tune of Dainty Davy is inserted in Play- 


ford's Dancing-Master, first published in 1657. It is clear, 
therefore, that there was a song under this title, long before 
the well-known story about the Rev. David Williamson and 
the daughter of the Laird of Cherrytrees. 

From the letter Q being affixed to this song in Ramsay's 
work, (by which, he tells us, is meant, old songs with addi- 
tions) Bvirns was induced to conjecture, that nothing but the 
chorus was old, and that Ramsay himself was the author of 
the song. In a communication, however, by Lord Wood- 
houselee to Mr R. H. Cromek, his Lordship says, " I have 
good reason to believe, that no part of the words of this song 
was written by Ramsay. I have been informed, by good 
authority, that the words, as printed in Ramsay's Collection, 
were written by the Hon. Duncan Forbes, Lord Pi-esident of 
the Court of Session." — See CromeJc's Select Scottish So7iffSi 
ancient and modern, with critical observations and biogra- 
phical notices, by Robert Burns, vol. ii. p. 188. 


This song was written by the late Mr John Cunningham, 
the poet and comedian, about the year 1766, and set to mu- 
sic by Mr Jonathan Battishill, a celebrated English compo- 
ser, who obtained the gold medal in 1770 for his well-known 
glee for three voices, Underneath this myrtle shade. This 
song was printed without the music in the London Song- 
ster, in 1767, and was frequently sung by Miss Polly Young 
at Vauxhall Gardens, with great applause. Burns says, that 
" Kate of Aberdeen" is, I believe, the work of poor Cun- 
ningham the player, of whom the following anecdote, though 
told before, deserves a recital. — "A fat dignitary of the church, 
coming past Cunningham one Sunday, as the poor poet was 
busy plying a fishing-rod in some stream near Durham, his na- 
tive country, his reverence reprimanded Cunningham very se- 
verely for such an occupation on such a day. The poor poet, 
with that inoffensive gentleness of manners which was his 
peculiar characteristic, replied, that he hoped God and his 


reverence Avould forgive his seeming profanity of that sacred 
day, as he had no dinner to eat hut what lay at the bottom 
of that pool. This, Mr Woods the player, who knew Cun- 
ningham well, and esteemed him much, assured me was 
true."" — Reliques. 

The late Mr William Woods, of the Theatre Royal, 
Edinburgh, was incorrect when he told Burns that Durham 
was the place of Cunningham's nativity. He was born in the 
year 1729 in Dublin, where his father, an eminent wine- 
merchant, (who was a descendant of the Cunninghams of 
Enterkine in Ayrshire) then resided. At the age of twelve 
he wrote several little poems, which are still admired, and he 
produced the only dramatic performance he left, viz. Love in 
a Mist, before he was seventeen. Although both his voice 
and figure were rather against him, his passion for the stage 
obtained so strong a power over him, that he secretly left his 
parents, and embarked for England. After experiencing va- 
rious vicissitudes of fortune as an itinerant player, he was, in 
1761, engaged as a performer at the Edinburgh Theatre, at 
that time under the direction of Mr Love. Here he wrote 
some of his best pieces, and, as a poet, began to emerge from 
obscurity. He afterwards repaired to London, in hopes of 
obtaining a more comfortable, as well as a more respectable 
subsistence in the literary world; but the bookseller, by whom 
he was employed, in a short time became bankrupt, and he 
once more returned to Scotland. At this period he was en- 
gaged by Mr Digges, who had now become manager of the 
Edinburgh Theatre, who treated our author with uncom- 
mon respect • and kindness. Mr Cunningham resided in 
Edinburgh during the whole of Mr Digges' management of 
the Theatre. He then went to Newcastle-upon-Tyne, which 
had formerly been his residence for several years, and which, 
to his last breath, he used emphatically to call his home. At 
this place, and in the neighbouring towns, he earned a mo- 
derate subsistence, and was much esteemed by several of the 
most respectable characters in the country. Mr Cunningham 


died at Newcastle on the 18th September, 1773, and was 
buried in St John's Church-yard. 



In the Muses Delight, printed at Liverpool in 1754, this 
beautiful old Scottish melody is erroneously attributed to Sig- 
nor David Rizzio, a musician in the service of Mary, Queen 
of Scots. The real name of the composer is unknown. 
Prior to the birth of Ramsay, in 1684, it was adapted to the 
following verses, which are said to have been written by Lord 

When Maggie and I were acquaint, 
I carried my noddle fii' hie ; 
Nae lint-white on aU the gay plain. 
Nor gowdspink sae bonny as she. 
I whistled, I pip'd, and I sang, 
I woo'd, but I came nae great speed. 
Therefore I maun wander abroad. 
And lay my banes far frae the Tweed. 
To Maggie my love I did tell, 
Saut tears did my passion express ; 
Alas ! for I loo'd her o'er well. 
And the lasses loe sic a man less : 
Her heart it was frozen and cauld. 
Her pride had my ruin decreed. 
Therefore I wiU wander abroad. 
And lay my banes far frae the Tweed. 

The beautiful song, beginning, What beauties does 
Flora disclose, was written prior to 1724, as it was printed 
in Ramsay's Collection that year, and again in 1725, with the 
music, in the Orpheus Caledonius. The author was Mr 
William Crawfurd, of the house of Auchinames, in the 
county of Renfrew, an intimate friend and correspondent of 
Hamilton of Bangour. — See Lord Woodhouselee''s Life of 
Lord Kaims, vol. i. According to the testimony of Sir Wal- 
ter Scott, Bart, the lady who is celebrated in Crawfurd's 
song was a Miss Mary LiUias Scott, one of the daughters of 
Walter Scott, Esq. of Harden, an estate delightfully situated 
on the north side of the Tweed, about four miles below Mel- 
rose, This lady was a descendant of another celebrated 
beauty, Mary Scott, daughter of Mr Scott of Dryhope, 


in Selkirkshire, famous by the traditional name of " The 
Flower of Yarrow." Miss M. L. Scott of Harden was 
certainly, in her youth, one of the greatest beauties in 
Scotland. She, as well as her elder sister, who was rather 
plain than handsome, were both excellent singers. The 
youngest sister, in particular, frequently sung the bal- 
lad of Lochaber with such feeling and effect, as to draw tears 
from those who heard her. The Duke of Hamilton, who 
was a great admirer of this lady, had her picture painted by 
Ramsay, the poet's son. It was esteemed a good likeness. 
Pennant takes notice of this picture ; but the editor is un- 
certain if it still remains in Hamilton Palace. In Burns's 
Reliques, it is said that the Christian name of the poet was 
Robert Crawford, and that the Mary he celebrated was a 
Mary Stewart, of the Castlemilk family, afterwards married 
to a Mr John Ritchie. As to both these points, the infor- 
mation which Burns received appears to have been incorrect. 
Mr Gay selected this beautiful air for one of his songs in 
the opera of " Polly," beginning. The stag, when chac'd all 
the long day — printed in 1729. 


This beautiful song, as well as the first set of the tune, are 
the composition of Mr John Lowe, who was born at Ken- 
more in Galloway, in the year 1750. His father was gar- 
dener to the Hon. Mr Gordon of Kenmore, son of that un- 
fortunate nobleman who paid the forfeit of his life and titles 
for his adherence to the House of Stewart in 1715. Lowe 
was the eldest son of a numerous family, and received a 
pretty liberal education at the parish-school of Kells. At 
the age of fourteen, he was bound apprentice to a respectable 
weaver of the name of Heron, father of the late Robert 
Heron, author of the History of Scotland, in six volumes, 
and other works. This profession, though dictated by the 
necessity of a parent, was neither congenial to the feelings 
nor genius of young Lowe. By his own industry, however, 
he was afterwards enabled to place himself under the tuition 

38 XXXVII. — Mary's dream. 

of Mr Mackay, then schoolmaster of Carsphairn, an eminent 
master of the languages. Lowe at this time employed his 
evenings in teaching church-music, as he possessed a very 
just ear, sung well, and played with considerable skill upon 
the violin. These qualities, added to a happy temper and 
a fine flow of animal spirits, soon gained him many friends, 
through whose assistance our poet was, in 1771, enabled to 
enter himself a student of divinity in the University of Edin- 
burgh, On his first return from college, he became tutor in 
the family of Mr M'Ghie of Airds, an amiable country gen- 
tleman, who had several beautiful daughters. In this ro- 
mantic abode, so favourable to the descriptive muse, Lowe 
composed many little pieces, of which, it is to be regretted, 
few copies are now to be found, though there are some 
songs of his composition still sung by the common people of 
the Glenkens in Galloway. He also composed a pretty long 
pastoral, entitled, " Morning, a Poem," which is still preserved 
in his own hand-writing, and another fine song, Pompey's 
Ghost. He likewise attempted to write a tragedy, but no 
part of it is now to be found. About this time Mr Alexan- 
der Miller, a surgeon, who had been engaged to Mary, 
one of the young ladies of Airds, was unfortunately lost at 
sea, an event which would probably now have been forgotten 
but for the exquisitely tender and pathetic song of Mary's 
Dream, which has given to it immortality. It is presumed, 
that our poet was sensibly alive to the misfortunes of a young 
lady, whose sister had inspired him also with the tenderest 
passion ; but it was not their fate to be united. 

After finishing his studies at the Divinity-hall, and seeing 
no prospect of obtaining a living in his native country, Mr 
Lowe, in 1773, embarked for America. For sometime he 
acted as tutor to the family of a brother of the great Wa- 
shington, a situation which supplied some hopes of advance- 
ment. He next opened an academy for the education of 
young gentlemen in Fredericksburgh, Virginia,' which was 
given up upon his taking orders in the church of England. 
After this event he married a Virginian lady, who unfortu- 

XXXVII.— Mary's dream. 39 

nately proved his ruin. She was not only regardless of his 
happiness, but even unfaithful to his bed. Overwhelmed 
with shame, disappointment, and sorrow, the vigour of his 
constitution was broken, and he fell into an untimely grave, 
in 1798, in the 48th year of his age. His remains were in- 
terred under the shade of two palm-trees, near Fredericks- 
burg, without even a stone to write, " Mary, weep no more 
for me." 

This truly elegant and popular ballad, however, Mr Cro- 
mek informs us, was originally composed by Lowe in the 
Scottish dialect, before he gave it the polished English form. 
As the older ballad may be interesting to some readers in 
original Scottish garb, it is here subjoined. 


The lovely moon had climbed the hill, 

Where eagles big aboon the Dee ; 

And like the looks of a lovely dame. 

Brought joy to every body's ee. 

A' but sweet Mary deep in sleep. 

Her thoughts on Sandie far at sea ; 

A voice drapt saftly on her ear, 

" Sweet Mary, weep nae mair for me !" 

She lifted up her waukening een. 

To see from vs^hence the voice might be. 

And there she saw her Sandy stand. 

Pale-bending on her his hollow ee ! 

Mary dear, lament nae mair, 

I'm in death's thraws aneath the sea J 
Thy weeping makes me sad in bliss, 
Sae, Mary, weep nae mair for me 1 

The wind slept when we left the bay, 
But soon it wak'd and rais'd the main. 
And God, he bore us down the deep. 
Who strave wi' Him, but strave in vain ! 
He stretch'd his arm and took me up, 
Tho' laith I was to gang but thee ; 

1 look frae heaven aboon the storm, 
Sae, Mary, weep nae nlair for me ! 


Take off thae bride-sheets frae thy bed, 
Which thou hast faulded down for me ; 
Unrobe thee of thy earthly stole — 
I'll meet in heaven, aboon, wi' thee. 


Three times the grey cock flapt his wing. 
To mark the morning lift his ee. 
And thrice the passing spirit said. 
Sweet Mary, weep nae mair for me ! 

This second set of the air to Lowe's song, is, I believe, 
the composition of my friend Mr Schetky, the celebrated 
Violoncello player in Edinburgh. 

Mary M'Ghie, the heroine of both songs, was afterwards 
married to a very respectable gentleman, and died in England 
about two years ago. 



We are indebted both for the words and music of this fine 
English song to that eminent composer, Thomas Augustine 
Arne, Mus. Doc. It was originally sung by Mr Tenducci 
in the English opera of Artaxerxes, first performed at Covent 
Garden in February 1762. Dr Arne was the brother of 
Mrs Gibber, the celebrated singer and actress, and the father 
of Michael Arne, who likewise became an excellent musician. 
Many of Dr Arne's ballads were professed imitations of the 
Scottish style, and, in his other songs, he frequently dropped 
into it, though perhaps without design. He is generally 
supposed to have been the Dr Catgut of Foote's comedy of 
"The Commissary," acted at Hay-market in 1765. Dr 
Arne was born at London in March 1710, and died there of 
a spasmodic complaint, on 5th of March 1778. 


This fine pastoral song was written by Mr Robert Dud- 
geon, farmer at Preston, near Dunse, in the county of Ber- 
wick. Some elegant poetical compositions (still unpublished) 
are likewise attributed to this modest and unassuming writer. 
The air of this song is said to be of Gaelic origin, and that it 
is called, ^'^ Nian dounnan gohJiar^''' See Eraser's Highland 
Melodies. The editor never met with this Highland song, 



neither did he ever hear the tune, until it was pubhshed with 
Mr Dudgeon's .verses. 



This old melody is inserted in a manuscript music-book, 

which, from an inscription, appears to have belonged to a 

" Mrs Crockat in 1709," now in the editor's possession. The 

old song began — 

I wish my love were in a myre 
That I might pu' her out again. 

The remainder of this ditty, I believe, is lost. The verses 
in the Museum, beginning, " Blest as th' immortal Gods is 
he," were adapted to the old melody, and published by Thom- 
son in his Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. They are a tran- 
slation of an Ode of Sappho of Mitylene, the celebrated Greek 
poetess, who, for her excellence, is sometimes styled the Tenth 
Muse. She flourished about six hundred years before the 
Christian era. It is said, that being unable to conquer her 
own passion for Phaon, or to gain his aiFections, she cast her- 
self headlong from the promontory of Leucas, and perished in 
the sea. The translator was Ambrose Philips, Esq. the 
English dramatic writer and poet, who is allowed to have 
done every possible justice to his Grecian model. This spirited 
translation has been set to music by Mr Stubley, as well as by 
Mr Exeter, both doubtless in their best styles. It still, how- 
ever, continues to be more usually sung to the old Scottish 

The second set of verses to the same air, beginning, " O 
lovely maid, how dear^^s thy power," appears in the Tea-Table 
Miscellany with the initial L ; but Ramsay has left no clue 
for ascertaining the author. 


This beautiful old tune appears in Mrs Crockafs manu- 
script book in 1709. Though the song originally adapted 
to this air may have been pathetic, or of a melancholy cast, 
. corresponding to the nature of the melody itself, which is slow, 


plaintive, and in the minor mode ; nevertheless, it is certain, 
that it was adapted at an early period to a song of a very 
different cast ; it began 

Ae simmer night, on Logan braes, 
I helped a bonnie lassie on wi' her claise. 
First wi' her stockings, and syne wi' her shoon. 
But she gied me the glaiks when a' was done. 
But had I ken'd what I ken now, 
I would, &c. &c. 

The rest of the song is rather exceptionable on the score 
of delicacy. The verses in the Museum, beginning " For 
ever. Fortune, wilt thou prove an unrelenting foe to love," 
written by our admired poet James Thomson, author of the 
Seasons, first appeared, adapted to the air of Logan Water, in 
the Orpheus Caledoniu sin 172^v / ■■ - 

About the year 1783, a new song, to the tune of Logan 
Water, written by Mr John Mayne, a native of Glasgow, 
became very popular in the south west of Scotland. It was 
published along with the old air, not long thereafter, by the 
music-sellers, and soon became a favourite at Vauxhall and 
other parts of the kingdom. It was afterwards printed in the 
Star Newspaper of London, signed with ihe initial letter of 
the author's surname, on 23d May 1789. 

By Mb. John Mayne. 
Bt Logan's streams that rin sae deep, 
Fu' aft wi' glee I've herded sheep ; 
Herded sheep or gather'd slaes, 
Wi' my dear lad, on Logan braes : 
But, waes my heart ! thae days are gane. 
And, fu' o' grief, I herd my lane ; 
While my dear lad maun face his faes. 
Far, far frae me and Logan braes ! 

Nae mair at Logan kirk will he, 
Atween the preachings, meet wi' me, 
Meet wi' me, or, when its mirk. 
Convoy me hame frae Logan kirk. 
I weel may sing— thae days are gane ! 
Frae kirk and fair I come alane, 
While my dear lad maun face his faes. 
Far, far frae me and Logan braes ! 

Mr Burns imagined that this delightful composition of Mr 


Mayne was of considerable antiquity. In a letter to a cor- 
respondent, dated 7th April, 1793, he says, "I remember 
the two last lines of a verse in some of the old songs of Logan 
Water, which I think pretty." 

" Now my dear lad maun face his faes, 
Far^ far frae me and Logan braes." 

These two lines Burns has incorporated into his elegant 
stanzas to the same tune, composed in one of his pensive 
moods, as he himself informs us in the following letter ad- 
dressed to Mr George Thomson, and afterwards published 
in Dr Currie's edition of our poet's works. , 

" Have you ever, my dear sir, felt your bosom ready to 
burst with indignation on reading of those mighty villains 
who divide kingdom against kingdom, desolate provinces, and 
lay nations waste, out of the wantonness of ambition, or often 
from still more ignoble passions ? In a mood of this kind to- 
day, I recollected the air of Logan Water; and it occurred 
to me, that its querulous melody had its origin from the 
plaintive indignation of some swelling, suffering heart, fired 
at the tyrannic strides of some public destroyer, and over- 
whelmed with private distress, the consequence of a country's 
ruin. If I have done any thing at all like justice to my feel- 
ings, the following song, composed in three quarters of an 
hour's meditation in my elbow chair, ought to have some 


By Robert Burns. 


LoGANj sweetly didst thou glide. 
That day I was my Willie's bride ; 
And years sinsyne hae o'er us run. 
Like Logan to the simmer sun. 
But now thy flow'ry banks appear. 
Like drumlie winter^ dark and drear ; 
While my dear lad maun face his faes, 
Far^ far frae me and Logan braes. 

Again the merry month o' May 
Has made our hills and valleys gay. 
The birds rejoice in leafy bow'rs. 
The bees hum round the breathinar flow'rs. 


Blytlie morning lifts his rosy eye. 
And ev'ning's tears are tears of joy ; 
My soul, delightless, a' surveys. 
While Willie's far frae Logan braes. 


Within yon milk-white hawthorn bush, 
Amang her nestlings sits the thrush ; 
Her faithfu' mate will share her toil. 
Or wi' his song her cares beguile. 
But I wi' my sweet nurslings here, 
Nae mate to help, nae mate to cheer. 
Pass widow'd nights and joyless days. 
While Willie's far frae Logan braes. 


O wae upon you, men of state. 
That brethren rouse to deadly hate ! 
As ye mak 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 ; 
But soon may peace bring happy days. 
And Willie hame to Logan braes. 

In Duncan's Pocket Encyclopedia of Scottish, English, 
and Irish Songs, printed at Glasgow, in two neat vols, 
18mo. 1816, four additional stanzas are annexed to 
Mayne's song. They possess considerable merit, and 
bring matters to a happy issue between the disconsolate shep- 
herdess and her dear lad, who had returned " free from 
wars alarms," and agreeably surprised her while weeping his 
absence on Logan braes. He leads her immediately to the 
altar of Hymen, and all's well. These additional verses, how- 
ever, render the song too long and tedious. 

This Logan Water, celebrated by so many Scottish bards, 
rises in the hills which separate the parishes of Lismahagoe 
and Muirkirk, and, after running eastward for a course of 
eight miles, falls into the river Nethan- 


This tune is inserted in a very old manuscript in the pos- 
session of the Editor, written in square-shaped notes. It has 
no title prefixed to it, so it is uncertain what it was called 


prior to the year 1724. There is some reason to believe 
that the old song began, My love Annie's very bonnie, as 
the song of Allan Water, in Ramsay's Collection, has both 
these titles, though no such hne as My love Annie's very 
bonnie occurs in the whole of Crawfurd's song. The verses 
in the Museum, beginning, " What numbers shall my muse 
repeat," were written by William Crawfurd, Esq. author of 
the fine pastoral song of Tweedside. They were first adapt- 
ed to the old air of Allan Water, in the Orpheus Caledonius, 
in 1725. 

The Allan Water here celebrated, is a small river in Perth- 
shire, which takes its rise at Gleneagles, in the parish of 
Blackford, and, passing by Dunblane, discharges itself into 
the river Forth, about two miles above Stirling bridge. 



The author of this inimitable ballad was William Julius 

Mickle, Esq. a native of Langholm, and well known as the 

elegant and inimitable translator of the " Lusiad and other 

poetical works."" The sixth stanza alone, as it stands in the 

Museum, is not the composition of Mickle; neither is it in 

Herd's copy. It was supplied by Dr Beattie, subsequently 

\i"f to 1776. " This (says Burns) is one of the most beautiful 

^*t-^ songs in the Scots or any other language." These two lines, 

" And will I see his face again ! 

And will I hear him speak !" 

as well as the two preceding ones, 

" His very foot has music in't. 
As he comes up the stair." 

are unequalled by almost any thing I ever heard or read ; 

and the lines, 

" The present moment is our ain. 
The neist we never saw."* 

are worthy of the first poet. It is long posterior to Ram- 
say's days. About the year 1771 or 72, it came first on the 

* These are the two last lines of the sixth stanza, which was supplied by Dr 


streets as a ballad, and I suppose the composition of the 
song was not much anterior to that period." Thus far 
Burns. Mr Cromek, the editor of his Reliques, was at con- 
siderable pains to discover the author of this incomparable 
ballad. At first he seems to have been inclined to ascribe it 
to a Miss Jean Adams, who formerly taught a day-school at 
Crawford's-dyke, in the neighbourhood of Greenock, and 
who died in the Town Hospital of Glasgow, on 3d April 
1765. The reasons which induced Mr Cromek to form this 
conclusion were, 1 wo, That Mrs FuUerton, who was a pupil 
of Jean Adams, frequently heard her repeat it, and affirm it 
to be her composition. 2do, Mrs Crawford, a daughter of 
the above Mrs FuUerton, in a letter to Mrs Fletcher, dated 
Ratho-house, January 24, 1810, says, " You may assure Mr 
Cromek, that the ballad, ' There''s nae luck about the house,' 
was written by Jean Adams on a couple in Crawford's-dyke, 
the town where her father lived. I do not recollect that I ever 
heard her repeat it ; but since I can remember any thing, 
I have always heard it being spoken of as being her compo- 
sition by those she depended much upon. My aunt, Mrs 
Crawford of Cartsburn, often sung it as a song of Jean 
Adams'." Qtio, The song was published before Mr Mickle 
was known as an author. 

The grounds which had been adduced by Cromek, for 
supposing Jean Adams to be the author of the ballad, at 
once appear vague, inconsistent, and altogether inconclusive. 
Mrs FuUerton says, she frequently heard Jean Adams repeat 
it as her own composition. Her daughter, on the other hand, 
declares, she does not recollect she ever heard her repeat it, 
but has always heard it spoken of as being her composition. 
This proves nothing with respect to Mr Cromek's own asser- 
tion, that the ballad was published before Mr Mickle was 
known as an author, and that Jean Adams repeatedly declar- 
ed it to be her's at a time when Mr Mickle was living to dis- 
prove her title to it ; it can now only be matter of sincere re- 
gret, that he should have hazarded such unguarded assertions, 

xLiv.— there's nae luck about the house. 4T 

or shown himself so Uttle acquainted with the particulars of 
Mr Mickle's pubhc life. The ballad was neither seen in print, 
nor heard of in any shape whatever, before Mr Mickle was 
known as an author. So early as 1755, some of Mickle's 
poems were sent to Lord Lyttleton, who was so delighted 
with them, that he dissuaded Mickle from entering the marine 
service, to which the young man's views were at that time 
directed, and encouraged him to persevere in the paths of 
poetry. The idea of Mr Micl<le, contradicting poor Jean 
Adams' assertion of being the author, is really too absurd to 
require a serious refutation. Mickle never, in all probability, 
heard of her name, nor the story of her claiming his ballad as 
her own composition, in the whole course of his life. The 
following important discovery, by the Rev. Mr Sim, which 
was in 1810 communicated to Mr Cromek himself, at once 
swept away his former cobweb theory, and restored the true 
author of this inimitable ballad to his proper and now indis- 
putable right. It is here introduced into Mr Cromek's own 
words : 

" As the editor, on claiming the ballad ^ There's nae luck 
about the house' as the property of Jean Adams, had nothing 
in view but truth, he hastens to lay the following letter be- 
fore the readers of these volumes, written by the Rev. John 
Sim, A. B. editor of Mr Mickle's works, and his intimate 
friend, and received since the above account was printed. 

" The contents of Mr Sim's letter, and the poetical sketch it 
incloses, warrant the editor (Mr Cromek) in conceding the 
ballad to Mr MicJcle.''' 

" Pentonville, April 14, 1810. 

" Dear Sir, — Since I received Mr Mudford's letter, (a co- 
py of which you will see in the Universal Magazine for this 
month, page ^Q5) I have been so very fortunate as to dicover 
among Mr Mickle's MSS. what I have every reason to be- 
lieve, from its inaccuracy and other evident marks of haste, to 
be the very first sketch of the ballad, ' There's nae luck 
about the house,' a copy of which I have inclosed. Besides 

48 xLiv.— there's nae luck about the house. 

the marks of haste which I have noticed in the margin, you 
will find Colin spelt once with two and twice with a single 
I ; the verb mun (must) spelt with an u and an a, at the dis- 
tance of only two lines ; and the word make spelt twice with 
and thrice without the letter e. One stanza contains twelve, 
two stanzas eight, and the others only four lines a^piece ; by 
which he seems undetermined whether the first four or the 
last four lines should form the chorus. Other inaccuracies 
and blunders you will perceive on comparing the MSS. with 
the printed copy in my edition of Mickle's poetry. 

" Since I wrote to Mr Mudford, Mrs Mickle has informed 
me, without being asked, that she now perfectly recollects, 
that Mr Mickle gave her the ballad as his own composition, 
and explained to her the Scottish words and phrases ; and 
she repeated to me, with very little assistance, the whole of 
the song, except the eight hnes, which I have, and I think 
with justice, ascribed to Dr Beattie.* When I asked her 
why she hesitated at first; she said, that the question, coming 
unexpectedly upon her, flurried her, and the flurry, together 
with the fear that she might be called upon to substantiate 
what she then said upon oath, made her answer with diffi- 
dence and hesitation. This struck me at the time to have 
been the case ; and I believe such a behaviour to be very na- 
tural to persons labouring under a disorder so depressive as 
a paralysis. 

" I shall only add, that Mickle had too high an opinion of 
his own poetical powers, to have adopted the compositions of 
but very few of his contemporaries ; and certainly too much 

• On the authority of the Rev. Patrick Davidson of Rayne, in the county of 

The eight lines omitted in Mr Mickle's copy are likewise not to be found in Mr 
Herd's early edition of this song. They are as under— > 

" The cauld blasts of the winter wind, 

That thrilled thro' my heart, 

They're a' blawn by, I hae him safe. 

Till death we'll never part : 

But what puts parting in my head ? 

It may be far awa ; 

The present moment is our ain. 

The neist we never saw !" 



It is difficult now to determine, whether this air be origi- 
nally Irish or Scottish. In Scotland the old tune, " Will ye 
go to Flanders," which may be seen in the second page of 
M' Gibbon's fifst-Collection, is almost, note for note, the same 
as " Gramachree." In the Museum there are three sets of 
verses adapted to the air, all of them excellent. The first 
beginning, " One morning very early, one morning in the 
spring," is attributed to George Syron, a negro ; and it is 
said, that this poor maniac actually composed the song during 
his confinement in Bedlam. The second, " As down on 
Banna's banks I strayed, one evening in May," is the com- 
position of Mr Poe, a counsellor in Dublin. " This anec- 
dote," says Burns, " I had from a gentleman who knew the 
lady, the * Molly' who is the subject of the song, and to 
M'hom Mr Poe sent the first manuscript of his most beautiful 
verses. I do not remember any single line that has more 
true pathos than, 

" How can she break that honest hearty 
That wears her in its core." 


For the third and last set of verses, beginning, " Had I a 
heart for falsehood framed," we are indebted to the elegant 
pen of the late Right Hon. Richard Brinsley Sheridan, who 
introduced it as one of the songs in his musical opera of 
" The Duenna," written in 1775, and performed at Drury- 
lane that year. Mr Herd has preserved two verses of the 
old song of, " Will ye go to Flanders," in his Collection, vol. 
ii. p. 223, but they are of little interest. 


This old song, which appears to have been retouched 
about the beginning of last century, is printed along with 
the music in the Orpheus Caledonius, 1 725. It was also se- 
lected by Mr Gay, for a tune to one of his songs, in his mu- 


sical opera of " Polly," beginning, " When right and 
wrong's decided." Mr Gay selected a considerable number 
of other Scottish airs for his songs in the opera of Polly, in- 
tended as a second part to the Beggar's Oj)era, which is partly 
incomplete without it. Though the author seems to have 
written the second part to atone for any mischief his first 
might occasion among the lower orders of the people, the 
Duke of Grafton, who was then Lord Chamberlain, not only 
refused to license it, but likewise commanded it to be suppress- 
ed, through the intrigues of Walpole and his party ; but from 
what motives it is not easy to discover. It was, however, 
printed by subscription, at the desire of Gay's numerous pa- 
trons and friends, in 1729, both in quarto and octavo ; and 
the author cleared four times as much money as he could 
have expected from a very tolerable run of it at the theatre. 

Burns judiciously remarks, that the first half stanza is 
much older than the days of Ramsay. The old words be- 
gan thus — 

" The collier has a dochter. 
And, 0, she's unco bonny ; 
A laird he was that sought her. 
Rich baith in lands and monej% 
She wadna hae a laird. 
Nor wad she be a lady. 
But she wad hae a collier^ 
The colour o' her daddie." 

Burns himself wrote another set of verses to this air, which 
may be seen in Mr George Thomson's Collection ; but they 
are not in his happiest style. 


There is an old Anglo-Scottish song, entitled, " 'Twas 
within a furlong of Edinborough town," which, there is rea- 
son to believe, was a production of Thomas Durfey, publish- 
ed in Playford's first volume of " Wit and Mirth," in 1698. 
The air is also preserved in Oswald's Collection ; it is in the 
key of G minor. The words in the Museum, beginning, 


" 'Twas within a mile of Edinborough town," are only a mo- 
dern, though improved, version of the old verses, adapted to 
a new air, composed by Mr James Hook of London, well 
known for several successful imitations of the Scottish style. 


The old melody, together with a " jig" on the same sub- 
ject, appear in Oswald. The verses in the Museum, begin- 
ning, " Will ye gang o'er the lea rig," were written by Ro- 
bert Fergusson in one of his merry humours. There is an 
excellent song under the same title, however, which is much 
older than that of Fergusson. It begins, 

I'll rowe thee o'er the lea-rig-, 

My ain kind dearie, O ; 

I'll rowe thee o'er the lea-rig. 

My ain kind dearie, 0. 

Altho' the night were ne'er sae wat. 

And I were ne'er sae weary, O, 

I'll row thee o'er the lea-rig. 

My ain kind dearie^ 0. 

The following additional stanzas, grounded on the old 
verses, were written by Mr Wilham Reid, bookseller in Glas- 
gow, who has composed several very fine songs. 

At gloamin, if my lane I be. 

Oh, but I'm wondrous eerie, ; 

And mony a heavy sigh I gie. 

When absent frae my dearie^ : 

But, seated 'neath the milk-white thorn. 

In e'ening fair and dearie, O ; 

Enraptur'd, a' my cai"es I scorn. 

Whan wi' my kind dearie, 0. 

Whare thro' the birks the burnie rows. 

Aft ha'e I sat fu' cheerie, O ; 

Upon the bonny greensward howes, 

Wi' thee, my kind dearie, O : 

I've courted till I've heard the craw. 

Of honest chanticleerie, ; 

Yet never mist my sleep ava. 

Whan wi' my kind dearie, 0. 

For tho the night were ne'er sae dark. 

And I we7X' ne'er sae wearie, O, 

I'd meet thee on the lea-rig, 

My ain hind dearie, O. 


While in this wearie warld of wae. 

This wilderness sae drearie, O : 

What makes me blythe, and keeps me sae ? 

'Tis thee, my kind dearie, O. 

This is one of the fine old and exquisitely humorous Scot- 
tish Songs, which has escaped the polishing file of Ramsay, 
and happily reached us in its simple and native garb. It ap- 
pears in the Tea-Table Miscellany with the signature Z, by 
which letter Ramsay denotes such genuine old songs as had 
been composed time out of mindy but whose authors were 
unknown, even in his day, or that of his father before him. 
Ramsay was born in 1684; and, from the structure of the 
language and other intrinsic circumstances, it may fairly be 
conjectured, that the song itself is at least as ancient as the 
union of the crowns in 1603. This song appears in the first 
edition of the Orpheus Caledonius along with the music, in 
1725. Mr Gay selected this charming old Scottish air for 
one of his songs, beginning, " In war weVe nought but 
death to fear," in his Musical Opera of Achilles, performed 
at Covent Garden in 1733, after the author's death. 

The verses adapted to this tune in the Museum, begin- 
ning, *' Leave kindred and friends, sweet Betty," were written 
by Mr Joseph Mitchell, a Scotchman. He was the son of a 
stone-mason, and born in the year 1684. At an early pe- 
riod he had the happiness to be introduced to the Earl of 
Stair and Sir Robert Walpole, on the latter of whom he was 
for the greater part of his life almost entirely dependent. So 
zealous was Mitchell for the interest of his patron, that he 
was frequently distinguished by the title of Sir Robert Wal- 
pole's poet. Mitchell was the author of " Fatal Extrava- 
gance," a tragedy, published in 1720; Poems, in two vo- 
lumes octavo, 1729 ; and the opera of " The Highland Fair," 
1731. This author died, 6th February 1738, in the 53d 


year of his age. Mitchell lived in good correspondence with 

several eminent poets of his time, particularly Aaron Hill, 

James Thomson, David Mallet, and Allan Ramsay. 

In the Orpheus Caledonius the two following verses of 

another song, but in a different measure, are prefixed to 

Mitchell's words, 

As the gentle turtle dove 
By cooing shews desire ; 
As ivys, oaks do love. 
And twining round aspire : 
So I my Betty love. 
So I my Betty woo ; 
I coo as coos the dove. 
And twine as ivys do. 

Her kiss is sweet as spring. 
Like June her bosom's warm ; 
The autumn ne'er did bring. 
By half so sweet a charm. 
As living fountains do 
Their favours ne'er repent. 
So Betty's blessings grow. 
The more, the more they're lent. 

The measure of these stanzas is similar to that of the 
" Lass of Patie's Mill," to which air it is probable their au- 
thor had intended them to be sung. But Thomson, in 
adapting the old air to these two stanzas, in his Orpheus Ca- 
ledonius has taken some liberties with the melody ; and, by 
blending these stanzas with those of Mitchell, the song be- 
came a confused medley. These blunders were rectified in 
the Museum. The original words of the song, however, 
were written long before Mitchell's time, and are as follow : 

Blink o'er the burn, sweet Betty, 

It is a cauld winter night ; 

It rains, it hails, and it thunders. 

The moon she gies nae light : 

It's a' for the sake o' sweet Betty, 

That ever I tint my way ; 

O lassie let me creep ayont thee. 

Until it be break o' day. 

It's Betty shall bake my bread. 
And Betty shall brew my ale ; 


56 LI. BLINK o'er the BURN, SWEET BETTY. - 

And Betty shall be my love, 
When I come over the dale ; 
Blmk over the burn, sweet Betty, 
Blink over the burn to me ; 
And while I hae life, my dear lassie. 
My ain sweet Betty thou's be. 


Mr Chalmers, the biographer of Allan Ramsay, attri- 
butes this comic song to Ramsay himself. He is so far right ; 
but some of the lines belong to a much more ancient, though 
rather licentious song, which for that reason is here inad- 
missible. This old air is uncommonly pretty ; and, when 
played, makes a very lively and excellent dancing tune. 


This delightful air was formerly called, " O Jean, I love 
thee ;" but the words of this ancient song are supposed to be 
lost. The song to which this old air is adapted in the Mu- 
seum, beginning, " When absent from the nymph," was 
written by Ramsay, and printed in 1724, and again in 1725, 
with the music, in the Orpheus Caledonius. Ramsay cer- 
tainly must have seen the English song, which was written 
by Thomas South erne and set to music by Thomas Far- 
mer, introduced in the comedy called, " The Disappoint- 
ment, or Mother of Fashion," acted at London in 1084. 
This English song is printed in Henry Playford's " Theater 
of Musick," Book I, p. 5. London, 1685. It consists of the 
following stanzas : 

When absent from the nymph I love, 
I'd fain resolve to love no more ; 
Tho' reason would my flame remove. 
My love-sick heart will still adore. 
My weak endeavours are in vain. 
They vanish soon as they I'eturn ; 
I by one look relapse again. 
And in a raging fever burn. 

To rocks and trees I sigh alone. 
And often do my passion tell ; 
I fancy that they hear my moan. 
And echo back. You love too well ! 


Forbear your passion to pursue. 

Or it will end in misery ; 

The nymph's in love, but not with you^ 

If this wont do, despair and die. 

The English air by Farmer is in treble time, but greatly 
inferior to the old Scotch tune, in common time, called, " O 
Jean I love thee," to which William Thomson adapted 
Ramsay's verses in 1725. Ramsay's song is entitled, " The 
Complaint," to the tune, When absent from the nymph I 
love. From this circumstance it would appear, that he had 
known both the words and music of Southerne's English song. 


This fine pastoral melody was in former times called " My 
bonny Jean of Aberdeen," the last line of the chorus of a 
very old song which Ramsay had deemed inadmissible in 
his Collection. This poet, however, wrote the song in the 
Museum, beginning, " Love's goddess in a myrtle grove," in 
1723^, and Thomson adapted it to the old tune in his Or- 
pheus Caledonius in 1725. Watts reprinted both the words 
and music in the first volume of his Musical Miscellany in 
1729, and the song has since appeared in various collections. 
Adam Craig, who was one of the principal violin players at 
the concert held at Edinburgh on St Cecilia's day the 22d of 
November 1695, published a Collection of Old Scottish Airs 
in 1730, one of which is " Bonny Jean of Aberdeen." The 
reader will find a plan of this concert, with the names of the 
professional and amateur performers, inserted in the first vo- 
lume of the Transactions of the Antiquarian Society of Edin- 
burgh, and likewise in the Edinburgh Magazine or Literary 
Miscellany for February 1792, communicated by the kte 
William Tytler of Woodhouselee, Esq. 

Mr Charles Coffey selected this air of " My bonny Jean" 
for one of his songs, beginning, " Long have I been with 
grief oppressed," in bis musical opera of " The Female Par- 
son, or Beau in the Sudds," acted at Haymarket Theatre in 
London 1730, This opera was very justly condemned by 

58 L;^V,— BONNY JEAN. 

the audience on the first night of its representation, but the 
author published it with the songs set to music (among which 
there are several Scottish melodies), in the course of the same 


This old air of one strain (for the second strain is only a 
slight variation of the first,) was united to soma verses which 
Ramsay very properly rejected in the Tea-Table Miscellany, 
and substituted one of his own composition, which is that in 
the Museum, beginning, " And I'll o'er the muir to Maggie." 
Thomson did not insert Ramsay's song in his Orpheus Cale- 
donius. It appeared however in a monthly musical publication, 
called, " The British Miscellany, or the Harmonious Grove," 
printed for Daniel Wright, Brook Street, London, in Novem- 
ber 1733. It is here entitled, " O'er the moor to Maggie, 
within the compass of the Flute, never before printed." 

A second strain to the old tune appears in this publication, 
as well as in the subsequent Collection of Scottish Tunes by 
Oswald ; but both of them are merely the old tunes slightly 

The air of Pinky House was anciently called " Rothe's 
Lament." Of this old song, the melody and title are all that 
remain. It was printed in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725, 
adapted to the following ballad, one of the earliest composi- 
tions of Mr David Mallet. 

As Sylvia in a forest lay- 
To vent her woe alone ; 
Her swain Syhander came that way. 
And heard her dying moan : 
Ah ! is my love, she said, to you 
So worthless and so vain ? 
Why is your wonted fondness now 
Converted to disdain ? 

You vow'd the light should darkness turn. 
Ere you'd exchange your love ; 


In shades you may creation mourn, 

Since you unfaitliful prove : 

Was it for this I credit gave 

To every oath you swore ? 

But ah ! it seems they most deceive 

Who most our charms adore. 

'Tis plain your drift was all deceit. 
The practice of mankind : 
Alas ! I see itj but too late. 
My love hath made me blind. 
For you delighted I could die ; 
But, oh ! with grief I'm fill'd. 
To think that cred'lous constant I 
Should by yourself be kiU'd. 


This said — all breathless, sick, and pale. 
Her head upon her hand. 
She found her vital spirits fail. 
And senses at a stand. 
Sylvander then began to melt : 
But ere the word was given. 
The hoary hand of death she felt. 
And sigh'd her soul to heaven. 

The song in Johnson's Museum, beginning, " By Pinkie 
House oft let me walk," is said to have been written by Mr 
Joseph Mitchell, of whom mention has already been made. 
Mitchell seems to have been very partial to this old air, for 
he wrote another song to the same tune, beginning, '' As love- 
sick Corydon beside a murm'ring riv'let lay,'' which is print- 
ed in Watt's Musical Miscellany, vol. v. London, 1731. 

This charming little air, with the three first stanzas, each of 
four lines, were recovered by James Oswald, who printed 
the tune with variations in the seventh book of his Cale- 
donian Pocket Companion. Old David Herd afterwards 
published the words in his Collection in 1769- The last four 
silly lines, which are attached to them in the Museum, have 
no earthly connexion with the preceding stanzas ; they be- 
long to a still more ancient but inadmissible version of the 
song. Burns always felt a particular dehght in hearing this 
beautiful old air ; and he composed the following verses for it 


in March 1793, which are certainly inferior to nothing al- 
most that he ever wrote. — 

Here aw a, there awa, wandering Willie, 

Here awa, there awa, had awa hame ; 
Come to my bosom, my ain only dearie, 

TeU me thou bring'st me my Willie the same. 


Winter winds blew loud and cauld at our parting ; 

Fears for my Willie brought tears to my ee ; 
Welcome now simmer, and welcome my Willie — 

The simmer to nature — my Willie to me. 
Rest, ye wild storms, in the cave of your slumbers ; 

How your dread howling a lover alarms ! 
Wauken, ye breezes ! row gently, ye billows ! 

And waft my dear laddie ance mair to my arms. 


But oh ! if he's faitliless, and minds na his Nannie, 
Flow still between us thou wide-roaring main ; 

May I never see it, may I never trow it. 
But, dying, believe that my Willie s my ain. 

Burns, I believe, sent the first transcript of these verses 
to Mr George Thomson, to be inserted in his Collection of 
Scottish Songs. In the opinion of this gentleman, however, 
as well as that of William Erskine, Esq. advocate, the 
verses in some instances did not exactly correspond with the 
musical notes, and they suggested several amendments for 
the poet's approbation. The greater part of these Burns re- 
fused to adopt. " Give me leave," says he, in his letter to 
Mr Thomson, " to criticise your taste in the only thing in 
which it is in my opinion reprehensible. You know I ought 
to know something of my own trade. Of pathos, sentiment, 
and point, you are a complete judge ; but there is a quality 
more necessary than either in a song, and which is the very 
essence of a ballad, I mean simplicity. Now, if I mistake 
not, this last feature you are a little apt to sacrifice to the 


This ancient and uncommonly humorous song appears in 
Watson's " Choice Collection," printed at Edinburgh in 


170a It is there titled « The blythsome Wedding," and 
placed next to " Christ's Kirk on the Green,"" with which it is 
pi'obably coeval. This is another of the old Scottish songs, 
which has fortunately been handed down to us in its primi- 
tive state. It is valuable both as a curious specimen of the 
ancient language of Scotland as well as of the coarse but live- 
ly manners of our peasantry in the olden times, circumstances 
which too frequently escape altogether the notice of the his- 
torian. A genuine copy of the music and words of this song 
is inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius. The copy in the 
Museum is likewise a correct one, with the exception of the 
last line of stanza 4th. In the original, the words are, " And 
bang'd up her wame in Mons-Meg*," which Johnson thought 
proper to change for the sake of delicacy, though the line he 
has substituted is nearly as coarse as well as defective in point 
of measure. It would appear that the writer of the song had 
been a native of the northern side of the river Forth, from 
his sarcastic allusion of " Kirsh" having gone south to Edin- 
burgh for her education. 


This air appears in Skeine's MS. written prior to the year 
1598. It is there titled, " Sae mirrie as we hae bein," the 
first line no doubt of a song, or of its chorus, which is now 
lost. In the Orpheus Caledonius, the music is adapted to 
some stanzas beginning, " Now Phoebus advances on high, 
nae footsteps of winter are seen," which were written by Ram- 
say, and published in his Tea-Table Miscellany. 

* Mons-Meg was the name given to a huge cannon which formerly lay in the 
castle of Edinburgh. In the accounts of the grand Chamberlain of Scotland, the 
following entries, relative to this piece of ordnance, occur, " 1497, July 21. To 
the pyonouris to gang to the castell to help with Mons doun, 10 *7*. Item to the 
Tnenstrallis that playit before Mons domi the gait, lis sli. I am informed that 
she burst during the reign of Charles II. On the 19th day of April 1754, Mons- 
Meg was removed from the castle of Edinburgh to Leith to be shipped for the 
tower of London, where she afterwards arrived in safety, and is still preserved 
there as a national curiosity. Her calibre is about two feet, and her weight has been 
computed to be upwards of five tons. 


The verses in the Museum, however, in which part of the 
ancient chorus seems to be retained, are certainly preferable. 
They were copied from Herd's Collection, but he has left no 
key for ascertaining who wrote them. Burns, alluding to 
this song, says, it " is beautiful ; the chorus in particular is 
truly pathetic. I never could learn any thing of its author.'''' 


This song was written by Ramsay, and it is supposed to 
have been one of the earhest productions of his muse. It is 
the first song in point of order in his Tea-table Miscellany, 
1724. In the year following, Thomson adapted it to the old 
air of '' Bonny Christy," in his Orpheus Caledonius, but the 
original words of the ancient song are now lost. The editor 
is credibly informed, that the bonny Christy of Ramsay's 
song was Dame Christian Dundas, daughter of Lord Arniston, 
and wife of Sir Charles Erskine of Alva, Bart. This old 
tune is to be found in the Collections of M'Gibbon, Oswald, 
and several others. 


This humorous picture of a rustic courtship, is another 
little poetic gem of some ancient though now forgotten minstrel. 
It appears in the Tea-Table Miscellany with the signature Z ; 
which denotes that the song had been composed time out of 
mind, as Ramsay expresses it, but that even in his days, the 
author was unknown. It is likewise inserted with the music 
in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1 725. In Ramsay's Tea-Table 
Miscellany this song is entitled " For the love of Jean." 
This title however does not appear to have any sort of relation 
to the old comic verses. Perhaps there was another song 
sung to the same tune in the days of Ramsay. 


The title of this old pipe tune is " O'er the hills and far 
awa," of which a manuscript copy of considerable antiquity is 


in the possession of the editor. It is probable that this, with 
many other Scottish melodies and songs, were introduced into 
England about the year 1603, when James VI. left his native 
country to ascend the English throne. In the Pepysian 
Collection, there is an humorous poetical dialogue, which 
seems to have been composed about this time, called " A pro- 
per new ballad, entitled, The wind hath blown my plaid awa, 
or a discourse betwixt a young maid and the Elphin Knight. 
To he sung to its own new pleasant tune." It consists of 
twenty stanzas, of which the first may serve as a specimen. 

The Elphin Knight sits on yon hill, 
Ba, ba, ba, lilli ba; 
He blows his horn both loud and shrill. 
The wind has blown my plaid awa. 

From the peculiar structure of the stanzas, and the broad 
dialect of the burthen line, the author of this ballad must 
have heard both the tune and words of the silly old Scottish 
ditty; it begins. 

It's o'er the hills and far awa. 
It's o'er the hills and far awa. 
It's o'er the hills and far awa. 
The wind has blawn my plaid awa. 

The song in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, entitled, 

" O'er the hills and far away," beginning. Jockey met with 

Jenny Juir, is not a genuine Scottish production. It was made 

by one of the Grub-street poetasters about the year 1700, and 

afterwards inserted with the music in the fourth volume of the 

*' Pills to purge Melancholy," a second edition of which, by Mr 

John Lenton, was printed in 1709. It is there called " Jockey's 

Lamentation." Ramsay only altered some of the words, and 

struck out the last stanza of the English song, which runs thus ; 

There by myself I'll sing and say, 

'Tis o'er the hills and far away 

That my poor heart has gone astray. 

Which makes me grieve both night and day. 

Farewell, farewell thou cruel She, 

I fear that I shall die for thee ; 

But if I live this vow I'll make. 

To love no other for your sake. 

'Tis o'er the hills, Sjc. 

64 Lxii. — o"'er the hills and far away. 

Gay selected this tune for one of his songs in the Beggar's 
Opera, acted at London in 1728, beginning, " Were I laid on 
Greenland coast." It was also chosen as the air to a loyal 
and patriotic ballad, written and printed in the reign of 
Queen Ann, entitled, '« The Recruiting Officer, or the Mer- 
ry Volunteers,"" beginning, 

Haek ! now the drums beat up again^ 
For all true soldier gentlemen : 
Then let us list and march, I say. 
Over the hills and far away. 
Over the hills and over the main. 
To Flanders, Portugal, and Spain, 
Queen Ann commands, and we'll obey. 
Over the hills and far away. 
&c. &c. &c. 

This latter ballad was inserted in Lenton's second edition 

of the Pills, vol. iv. printed at London in 1709. 


The battle of Flodden-field, between James the IV. King 
of Scots, and Thomas Howard Earl of Surrey, commander in 
chief of the Enghsh forces, was fought on the 9th of Sep- 
tember 1513. On that fatal day, this gallant Monarch, with 
many of his nobles and the greater part of his army, com- 
posed of the flower of the Scottish youth, were left dead on 
the field. Of the old ballad, commemorating this melancholy 
catastrophe, a broken stanza or two, I believe, are all that 
remain ; but the ancient air is preserved in Skene's MS. with 
the title of " The flowres of the Forrest." It is also printed 
in Oswald's Collection, and in many other musical works. 

I've heard a lilting 

At the ewes milking, 

# * * ' * * * 

The flowres of the forrest are a' wede awa. 
The loss of the old ballad, however, judging from the fore- 
going specimen, is the less to be regretted, since it has been 
supplied by three of the finest lyrical compositions, of which 
the English or Scottish language can boast ; all of them, too, 
by ladies no less distinguished for the brilliancy of their ta- 
lents than their respectability in private life. 


The earliest of these compositions was written by Miss 
Rutherford, daughter of Mr Rutherford of Fairnalie, in the 
county of Selkirk. This lady was afterwards married to Mr 
Cockburn* of Ormiston, son of the then Lord Justice Clerk of 
Scotland, and eminent for his useful and extensive improve- 
ments in agriculture. The production of this lady's song 
was occasioned by the following incident. A gentleman of her 
acquaintance, in passing through a sequestered but romantic 
glen, observed a shepherd at some distance tending his flocks, 
and amusing himself at intervals by playing on a flute. The 
scene altogether was very interesting, and, being passionately 
fond of music, he drew nearer the spot, and listened for 
some time unobserved to the attractive but artless strains of 
the young shepherd. One of the airs in particular appeared 
so exquisitely wild and pathetic, that he could no longer re- 
frain from discovering himself, in order to obtain some infor- 
mation respecting it from the rural performer. On inquiry, 
he learnt that it was " The Flowers of the Forest." This 
intelligence exciting his curiosity, he was determined^ if possi- 
ble, to obtain possession of the air. He accordingly prevailed 
on the young man to play it over and over, until he picked 
up every note, which he immediately committed to paper on 
his return home. Delighted with this new discovery, as he 
supposed, he lost no time in communicating it to Miss 
Rutherford, who not only recognised the tune, but likewise 
repeated some detached lines of the old ballad. Anxious, 
however, to have a set of verses adapted to his favourite me- 
lody, and well aware that few, if any, were better qualified 
than Miss Rutherford for such a task, he took the liberty 
of begging this favour at her hand. She obligingly con- 
sented, and, a few days thereafter, he had the pleasure of 
receiving the following pretty stanzas from the fair author. 

* Mr Cockburn was one of that literary society of Edinburgh, so distinguished 
in point of manners and accomplishments, of which the fathers were Hamilton of 
Bangour, Sir William Bennet, &c. who were succeeded by still abler men, David 
Hume, John Hume, Lord Elibank, Henry Mackenzie, and others. 



By Mrs Cockburn. 

I've seen the smiling of fortune beguiling, 
I've tasted her favours, and felt her decay ; 
Sweet is her blessing, and kind her caressing. 
But soon it is fled — it is fled far away. 

I've seen the forest adorned of the foremost. 
With flowers of the fairest, both pleasant and gay ; 
Full sweet was their blooming, their scent the air perfiniiing-. 
But now they are wither' d, and a' wede away. 

I've seen the morning, with gold the hills adorning, 
And the red storm roaring, before the parting day ; 
I've seen Tweed's silver streams, glittering in the sunny beams. 
Turn drumly and dark, as they roll'd on their way. 


O fickle Fortune ! why thus cruel sporting ? 

Why thus perplex us, poor sons of a day ? 

Thy frowns cannot fear me, thy smiles cannot cheer me. 

Since the flowers of the forest are a' wede away. 

The next beautiful elegy, adapted to the same air, and 
which made its appearance several years subsequent to that 
of Mrs Cockburn, was written by Miss Jane Elliot, a sister 
of Sir Gilbert ElUot of Minto, Bart, one of the senators 
of the College of Justice, father of the late, and grandfather 
of the present, Earl of Minto. The worthy Baronet had also 
a fine genius for poetry ; two of his songs are inserted in the 

Miss Elliot's ballad was published anonymously about the 
year 1755. From its close and happy imitation of ancient 
manners, it was by many considered as a genuine production 
of some old but long-forgotten minstrel. It did not, how- 
ever, deceive the eagle eye of Burns. " This fine ballad," 
says he, " is even a more palpable imitation than HardiJc- 
nute- The manners are indeed old, but the language is 
of yesterday. Its author must very soon be discover- 
ed.''— ^eZig-w^*. It was so ; and to Mr Ramsay of Och- 
tertyre, Sir Walter Scott, Bart. Sheriff-depute of Selkurk- 


shire, and the Rev. Dr Somerville of Jedburgh, we are in- 
debted for the discovery. 

By Miss Jane Elliot of M'mto. 


I've heard them lilting at the ewe-milking. 
Lasses 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 bughts in the morning nae bly the lads are scorning ; 
Lasses are lonely and dowie and wae ; 
Nae daffing, nae gabbing, but sighing and sabbing ; 
Ilk ane lifts her leglin, and hies her away. 

In har'st, at the shearing, nae youths now are jearing ; 
Bandsters are runkled and lyart or gray ; 
At fair or at preaching, nae wooing, nae fleeching. 
The flowers of the Forest are a wede away. 


At e'en. In the gloaming, nae younkers are roaming 
'Bout staks, with the lasses at bogle to play • 

But ilk maid sits eerie, lamenting her deary, 

The flowers of the Forest are a' wede away. 


Dool and wae for the order sent our lads to the border ! 
The English for ance by guile wan the day ; 
The flowers of the Forest that fought ay the foremost 
The prime of our land are cauld in the clay. 


We'll hear nae mair lilting at the ewe-milking. 
Women and bairns are heartless and wae ; 
Sighing and moaning on ilka green loaning. 
The flowers of the Forest are a' wede away. 

The third set of verses adapted to the " Flowers of the 
Forest,"" beginning Adieu ye streams that smootlily glide, 
inserted in the Museum, was composed by Miss Home, after- 
wards married to the celebrated Mr John Hunter, surgeon, 
brother of the founder of the Hunterian Museum at Glasgow. 
This lady likewise wrote the fine songs which are adapted to the 
airs of " Queen Mary's Lamentation — The Cherokee Indian's 
death-song — My mother bids me bind my hair," and many 


other beautiful lyric compositions. Her poetical works, edit- 
ed by herself, and dedicated to her son, were published in a 
^ neat volume, 12mo- 


This delightful air was formerly called, " The Braes of 
Yarrow." Some fragments of the old song still remain ; but 
that which is inserted in the Museum was wholly written by 
Ramsay, with the exception of the first four lines, which form 
part of the ancient ballad. Hamilton of Bangour also comr 
posed a fine poem in imitation of the ancient ballad, which is 
printed in his poetical works ; it commences with the identi- 
cal four old lines which Ramsay had previously adopted. 
Thomson published Bangour's ballad, adapted to the old air, 
in his Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. The Rev. Mr Logan, 
formerly one of the ministers of Leith, likewise composed a 
very pretty ballad to the same tune, which is printed in his 
works. Both of these ballads, however, are too long to be 
inserted in the present compilation. 
i> 2'Io cy The subject of the old ballad had been a great favourite, 
and, of course, was subsequently modelled into a variety of 
forms. Fragments of these appear in Burns' Reliques, and 
Herd's printed and MSS. Collections. The most perfect of 
them, however, is to found in the " Minstrelsy of the Bor- 
der," vol. ii. under the title of the Doraie Dens of Yarrow ^ 
which consists of seventeen stanzas of four lines. 

Tradition affirms, that the hero of the ancient ballad was 
one of the ancestors of the present Lord Napier, who was 
treacherously slain by his intended brother-in-law, Scott of 
Tushielaw, at a place called Annan's Treat, in Selkirkshire. 
The alleged cause of this atrocious act, it is said, originated 
from a proposal made by old Tushielaw to divide his estate 
equally between his son and daughter, in the event of her 
marrying so renowned a warrior. 



This ancient Scottish melody formerly consisted of one 
strain. It appears in the Orpheus Caledonius of 1725 in this 
simple garb, with the same verses that are inserted in the 
Scots Musical Museum, beginning, " Betty early gone a 
Maying." It was afterwards printed in the fourth volume of 
Watt's Musical Miscellany in 1730. There are some verses 
to the same air in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, 1724, be- 
ginning " My sweetest May let love incline thee," in stanzas 
of eight lines each. From this circumstance it is evident 
that a second strain had about this time been added to the 
tune, though unknown to the editor of the Orpheus Caledo- 
nius. The verses to Avhich the tune was originally adapted 
are supposed to be now irrecoverably lost. 

The ceremony of confirming a bargain, or contracting any 
solemn engagement, by each party licking his right hand 
thumb, and afterwards pressing it against that of the other, is 
of great antiquity. Decrees are yet extant in the Scottish re 
cords, prior to the institution of the College of Justice, sus- 
taining sales upon summonses of tliumh-licking, the fact of 
the parties having licked thumbs at finishing the bargain 
being first established by legal proof. Traces of this custom 
too are discoverable not only in the ancient history of eastern 
nations, among whom it probably originated, but likewise in 
that of the Scythian and Celtic tribes, the Goths, the Ar- 
menians, the Romans, the Iberians, and other nations. It has 
been conjectured by some persons, that Adonibezeck cut off 
the thumbs and great toes of threescore and ten kings, 
to punish them for breaking a covenant that had been rati- 
fied ^y this symbol.— /See Judges, chap. i. verse 1th. 

We likewise learn from Tacitus,' that the Iberians tied 
their right hand thumbs together by a strait cord ; and when 
the blood diffused itself to the extremities, it was then let out 
by slight punctures, and mutually hcked by the parties to 
the contract. — Vide Tacit. Ann. lib. xii. The Moors of 


70 Lxv — there's my thumb, I'll ne'ee beguile thee. 

India at this day frequently conclude bargains with one ano- 
ther, by licking and joining thumbs, in the very way which is 
still practised anaong the boys and some of the lower orders 
in Scotland. To this custom the last line, or burden of 
the old Scottish song, alludes, There's my thumb, I'll ne'er 
heguile thee. 


This song is improperly titled in Johnson's Museum. It 
should have been called, " Ah, Chloris, to the tune of Gil- 
deroyT The tender and pathetic stanzas in the Museum 
were composed by the Right Hon. Duncan Forbes, Esq. 
Lord President of the Court of Session in Scotland, about 
the year 1710. They were addressed to Miss Mary Rose, 
the elegant and accomplished daughter of Hugh Rose, Esq. 
of Kilravock. To this lady, with whom he had been ac- 
quainted from infancy, he was afterwards united in marriage. 
She bore him one son, who was his heir and successor, but 
Mrs Forbes did not long survive this event. His Lordship, 
however, remained a widower from that time till his decease, 
which happened on the 10th of December 1747, in the 
sixty-third year of his age. His remains were interred at 
Edinburgh, in the Grayfriar's Church-yard. It may safe- 
ly be affirmed, that a worthier man, a better lawyer, a more 
discerning and upright judge, or a more clear-headed, steady, 
and patriotic statesman than Duncan Forbes of Culloden, 
never existed in any country or age. A chaste and masterly 
marble statue, reckoned the chef d'cevre of the celebrated 
sculptor Roubilliac, has since been erected in the Parliament- 
house at Edinburgh, as a tribute of gratitude and respect to 
the memory of this truly great and good man. 

Ritson places Lord President Forbes's elegant stanzas at 
the head of his Collection of English Songs, in 3 vols 8vo. 
London, 1783, and says, that he never heard of its being set 
to music. It would therefore seem, that he never thought 
of looking for the song amongst the productions of the sister 


kingdom, for it appears in the first volume of Ramsay's Tea- 
Table Miscellany, published at Edinburgh on the ] st day of 
January, 1724, where it is directed to be sung To the tune 
of Gilderoy. The late editor of the CuUoden papers has, 
with great justice, attributed the song to its proper author. 

With respect to the hero of the ballad, called " Gilde- 
EOYj" we learn the following particulars from Spalding and 
other historians : " Gilderoy was a notorious free-booter in 
the highlands of Perthshire, who, with his gang, for a consi- 
derable time infested the country, committing the most bar- 
barous outrages on the inhabitants. Seven of these ruffians, 
however, were at length apprehended through the vigilance 
and activity of the Stewarts of Athol and conducted to 
Edinburgh, where they were tried, condemned, and executed, ^20^^ 

in February 1 638. Gilderoy, seeing his accomplices taken ^^^^!^3I> ^^^^^ tt 
and hanged, went up, and in revenge burned several houses Z^''^;^^ A:w?2Si- 
belonging to the Stewarts in Athol. This new act of atro- f^^ /^J^^ 
city was the prelude to his ruin. A proclamation was issued 
offering £1000 for his apprehension. The inhabitants rose 
en masse y and pursued him irom place to place, till at length 
he, with five more of his associates, were overtaken and se- 
cured. They were next carried to Edinburgh, where, after 
trial and conviction, they expiated their offences on the gal- 
lows, in the month of July 1638. 

If we may place any reliance on traditional report, it would 
seem that Gilderoy belonged to the proscribed " Clan, Gre- 
gor," and that the ballad was composed, not long after his 
death, by a young woman of no mean talent, who unfortu- 
nately became attached lo this daring robber, and had co- 
habited with him for some time before his being apprehended. 
That the ballad was well-known in England in 1650, is evi- 
dent from a black-letter copy of it printed at least as early as 
that date. There is another copy of it, with some slight va- 
riations, in Playford's Wit and Mirth, first edition of vol. iii. 
printed in 1703. Both these copies, however, though pos- 
sessing several stanzas of real poetical merit, contained many 


indelicate luxuriances that required the aid. of the pruning- 
hook. This was performed by a lady in every respect qua- 
lified for such an undertaking, namely, Miss Halket of Pet- 
ferran, afterwards married to Sir Henry Wardlaw of Pit- 
reavie, in Fifeshire, the well-known authoress of Hardica- 
nute. In Lady Wardlaw's amended copy, which did not 
appear till after her death, some of the old stanzas are re- 
tained, others retouched or expunged, and several from her 
own pen are added. The ballad, in its present shape, is now 
excellent and unexceptionable. It is rather long for inser- 
tion here, but it may be seen in the Collections of Herd, 
Ritson, Gilchrist, and many others. 


The music adapted to the same stanzas, inserted in the 
Museum, beginning, " By smooth winding Tay," appears 
in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. The verses are gene-, 
rally attributed to Allan Ramsay ; but, from the circum- 
stances about to be mentioned, they would rather seem to be 
the production of an older and somewhat inferior poet. Firsts 
Though the verses in the Tea-table Miscellany were only 
printed in 1724, yet the music made its appearance in Lon- 
don in a few months thereafter, viz. in 1725, and again in 
Craig's Collection, 1730. Now, it is a fact well known, that 
neither William Thomson, nor Adam Craig, published any 
tunes in their collections, but such as were old, and univer- 
sally sung in Scotland at the time. Secondly^ It is a re- 
ceived opinion, that Hay's Bonnie Lassie was a daughter of 
John Hay, Earl of Tweeddale, afterwards Countess Dowager 
of Roxburgh ; and Burns says, that this lady died at Broom- 
lands, near Kelso, sometime between the years 1720 and 
1740. Can we then for a moment suppose, that Ramsay 
could commit such anachronism as to represent this dowager 
as a " dear maid, fresh as the spring, and sweet as Aurora," 
in 1724 ? This seems rather improbable. The tune, as well 
as the verses (if written by Ramsay) must have been known 

LXVII.— JOHN hay's bonny LASSIE. 73 

long before the period of his pubUshing the Tea-Table Mis- 
cellany. This song was afterwards published with the mu- 
sic, in Watfs Musical Miscellany, vol. iv. London 1730. 


This Air appears in Oswald's, first Collection, published in 
^1741. The verses in the Museum, with exception of the two 
first lines which belong to the old song that was rejected 
by Johnson on the score of delicacy, were written by Mr 
James Tytler, a very clever but eccenti'ic character, com- 
monly called Balloon Tytler, from the circumstance of being 
the first person who projected and ascended from Edinburgh 
in one of these aerial machines. 

Tytler was the son of a clergyman in the presbytery of 
Brechin, and brother of Dr Tytler, the translator of Calli- 
machus. His attainments in almost every department of li- 
terature and science were in no small degree eminent. He 
was not only the principal editor, but likewise the composer 
of three-fourths of the second edition of the Edinburgh En- 
cyclopaedia. He was engaged, on still more liberal princi- 
ples, to conduct the third edition of that work, and wrote 
a larger share in the earlier volumes than is ascribed to him 
in the general preface. But, unfortunately, he embarked in 
the wild and irrational schemes of the British Convention, 
and published a hand-bill, written in so inflammatory a style, 
that a warrant was issued to apprehend him. He, however, 
escaped to America, and fixed his residence in the town of 
Salem, in the province of Massachusetts. Here he establish- 
ed a newspaper, in connection with a printer, which he con- 
tinued to his death in 1805, in the 58th year of his age. 


This is a very ancient and beautiful little air of one strain. 
The song, to Avhich the tune was originally united, with the 
exception of the chorus, is supposed to be lost. The old 
chorus consists of the following four lines : 


THE broom, the bonny bonny broom. 
The broom of the Cowdenknows ; 

1 wish I were at hame again. 
Milking my daddy's ewes. 

This is, .in all probability, one of the Scottish tunes that 
were introduced into England, not long after the union of 
the crowns in 1603, for there is an ancient black-letter Eng- 
lish ballad, " To a pleasant Scotch tune, called the Broom 
of Cowdenknows," with the following burden. 

With, the broom, the bonny broom. 
The broom of Cowdenknows ; 
Fain would I be in the north country. 
To milk my daddy's ewes. 

The first set of verses in the Museum, beginning " How 
blyth ilk morn was I to see,"" was copied from Ramsay's Tea- 
Table Miscellany, where it is subscribed with the letters 
" S. R." which probably were the initials of its author. The 
second set, beginning " When summer comes, the swains on 
Tweed,"" was written by William Crawfurd, Esq. and first 
printed in Ramsay''s Miscellany. 

Mr Gay selected the tune of the Broom of Cowdenknows 
for one of his songs in the Beggar's Opera, beginning " The 
miser thus a shiUing sees," acted in 1728. In Mrs Crokat's 
Manuscript Music Book, dated 1709, a second strain or part 
is-added to the old air ; but by whom this was done it does 
not appear. It is a manifest interpolation, and has seldom, 
if ever, been sung. The estate of Cowdenknows is situated on 
the east bank of the River Leader, about five miles north-east 
of Melrose. It presently belongs to Dr John Home, Pro- 
fessor of Materia Medica in the University of Edinburgh. 
Some of this gentleman's predecessors are probably alluded 
to in the old ballad, written by a minstrel named Burn, en- 
titled " Leader Haughs and Yarrow." It is inserted in the 
Tea-Table Miscellany, and concludes thus, 

For mony a place stands in hard case. 
Where blyth folk kend nae sorrow; 
With Homes that dwelt on Leader-side, 
And Scoi(s that dwelt on Yarrow. 


The8E three pretty stanzas in the Museum, beginning 

see that form tliat faintly gleams ! were written by Miss 
Ann Keith. The tune, which is a successful imitation of the 
Gaelic style, is the composition of Mrs Tough. 


This is the fine old air to which Thomson adapted 
Ramsay's song, beginning " When absent from the Nymph 

1 love," in his Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. In the Mu- 
seum this song is set to the tune of " O Jean I love thee." 
—See No 53. The original song is lost^ but the old verses 
could hardly have surpassed those elegant stanzas in the 
Museum, beginning " Tho' distant far from Jessie's charms," 
now adapted to the tune, and which, I believe, made their 
first public appearance in this work. Johnson, the original 
proprietor, could not recollect who wrote them. The ideas 
of the last stanzas, however, beginning " For conquering 
love is strong as death," are evidently borrowed from Scrip- 
ture. — See Song- of Solomon, chap. viii. v. 6. and 7. 


This is one of the finest pastoral melodies of Scotland. 
Mallet wrote the two first stanzas of the sonff, beffinninff 
The smiling morn, the breathing spring, and directed them 
to be sung To a Scotch tune. The BirJcs of Endermay. 
Thomson, in his Orpheus Caledonius, accordingly adapted 
them to this tune, which he also calls " the Birks of Ender- 
may." Ramsay inserted Mallet's song in the third volume 
of his Tea-Table Miscellany ; but he took the liberty of al- 
tering the last line of Mallet's two stanzas, both of Avhich 
end with the shades of Endermay, into the birks of In- 
vermay. Ramsay likewise published three additional stanzas. 


written, it is said, by Dr Bryce of Kirknewton, as a supple- 
ment to Mallet's song. The first of these stanzas begins 
The lav'ricks now and lint-whites sing; but it is very 
faulty, particularly with regard to the metre. The two 
remaining stanzas, beginning Behold the hills and vales 
around^ are very beautiful, and worthy of being placed be- 
side those of Mallet. Johnson, therefore, gave them a place 
in his Museum. 

The locality of this song is a subject of some dubiety. 
The river May, it is known, falls into the Erne nearly oppo- 
site to the pleasui-e-grounds of Lord Kinnoul, at Duplin 
Castle. The banks of the May are covered mth wood, both 
native and planted, amongst which the hirli, or birch, holds 
a conspicuous appearance, and here stands the house of In- 
vermay, the residence of the ancient and respectable family 
of Belches. This, in all probability, is the scenery alluded 
to in that part of the song which was published by Ram- 
say. It is also said, that there can be no doubt of the word 
being Invermay, which has a meaning, viz. the conflux of 
the May and the Erne. Endermay could have none. If the 
river was Ender, the last syllable would signify nothing, 
which is quite contrary to the practice of Gaelic compounds, 
and the Ender is in the very heart of the Highlands. These 
facts certainly carry a considerable degree of force and con- 
viction with them. 

It must be admitted, however, that Mr William Thomson, 
the editor of the Orpheus Caledonius, who was a professional 
musician, and played the second hautbois at the concert held 
at Edinburgh on St Cecilia's day, in 1695, spells the word 
Endermay. Both Mallet and Oswald write it the same way. 
Now there is a river called the Ender, in Blair Athol, Perth- 
shire, which falls into the Garry, at Dalmeen. Without 
plunging into the depths of Celtic etymology, therefore, we 
all know that Wyntoun, and other Scottish poets, use the 
word May for a maid or young immarried lady. Is it im- 

• ■ .. .,..,, ^.,.,. 


possible, therefore, that there might have been older verses 
to the same tune, in which the beauties and accompUsh- 
ments of some fair native of the banks of the Ender were ce- 
lebrated in the song of the Lowland bard ? We have in our 
days, a Maid of the Clyde, a Lady of the LaJce, Why then, 
in older times, might there not be a fair one, whose residence 
was among the birks of the river Ender ? The Ender May 9 


This ancient border-air originally consisted of one simple 
strain. The second, which, from its skipping from octave to 
octave, is very ill adapted for singing, appears to have been 
added about the same year, 1709, and was printed in Thom- 
son's Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725, adapted to the song 
written by Ramsay, beginning " Happy's the love that 
meets return," consisting of three stanzas of eight lines each, 
which is very far from being in his best style. I have fre- 
quently heard the old song, in my younger days, sung on the 
banks of the Tweed. It consisted of several stanzas of four 
lines each ; and the constant burden of which was, " Mary 
Scott's the flow'r o"* Yarrow." 

This celebrated fair one was the daughter of Philip Scott 
of Dryhope, in the county of Selkirk. The old tower of 
Dryhope, where Mary Scott was born, was situated near the 
lower extremity of Mary's lake, where its ruins are still vi- 
sible. She was married to Walter Scott, the laird of Harden, 
who was as renowned for his depredations as his wife was for 
her beauty. By their marriage-contract, Dryhope agrees to 
keep his daughter for sometime after the marriage, in return 
for which, Harden binds himself to give Dryhope the profits 
of the first Michaelmas moon. One of her descendants, Miss 
Mary Lilias Scott of Harden, equally celebrated for her 
beauty and accomplishments, is the Mary alluded to in 
Crawfurd's beautiful song of " Tweedside."— >SVg Notes on 
Song, No d6. 


Sir Walter Scott says, that the romantic appellation of the 
" Flower of Yarrow," was in latter days, with equal justice, 
conferred on the Miss Mary Lilias Scott of Crawfurd's ballad. 
It may be so, but it must have been confined to a very small 
circle indeed, for though born in her neighbourhood, I never 
once heard of such a circumstance, nor can I see any justice 
whatever in transferring the appellation of the *' Flower of 
Yarrow" to her descendant, who was born on the banks of 
the Tweed. 

The old air of the Flower of Yarrow, as has been said, 
consisted originally of one strain, to which a second had been 
annexed, not earlier than the beginning of last century. The 
same subject was afterwards formed into a reel or dancing 
tune, to which my late esteemed friend. Hector M'Niel, 
Esq. wrote a very pretty song, beginning " Dinna think, 
bonnie lassie, I'm gaun to leave you." But, in the first 
number of Mr Gow''s Repository, which was published a few 
years ago, this tune is called " Carrick's Rant," a strath- 
spey ; and the compiler of this Collection asserts, that " the 
old Scotch song (he must certainly mean the air) of Maiy 
Scott, is taken from this tune." The converse of this suppo- 
sition is the fact; for Carrick's Rant is nothing else than 
Cluries Reel, printed in Angus Cumming's Collection. But 
the tune of Mary Scott was known at least a century before 
either Clurie''s Reel, or Carrick's Rant, were even heard of. 

Mr Burns says, " I have been informed, that the tune of 
Down the burn Davie, was the composition of David 
Maigh, keeper of the blood slough hounds, belonging to 
the Laird of Riddell in Tweeddale." Reliques. But he 
was probably misinformed ; for the tune occurs note for note 
in the Orpheus Caledonius, printed in 1725. The verses 
beginning When trees did bud, and fields were green, 
are also in the Orpheus Caledonius. They were written by 
Crawfurd, but not in his usual elegant and chaste manner. 



Burns wrote the three following verses, which unite very 
happily with the air. 


Behold, my love, how green the groves. 

The primrose banks, how fair ; 

The balmy gales awake the flowers. 

And wave thy flaxen hair. 

The laverock shuns the palace gay. 

And o'er the cottage sings ; 

For nature smiles as sweet, I ween. 

To shepherd's as to kings. 


Let skilful minstrels sweep the string. 

In lordly lighted ha'. 

The shepherd stops his simple reed 

Blythe in the birken shaw ; 

The princely revel may survey 

Our rustic dance wi' scorn. 

But are their hearts as light as ours. 

Beneath the milk-white thorn. 

The shepherd in the flowery glen. 
In homely phrase will woo ; 
The courtier tells a finer tale. 
But is his heart as true ? 
These wild- wood flowers I've pu'd to deck 
That spotless breast of thine ; 
The courdei-'s gems may witness love — 
But 'tis na love like mine. 

Burns, in writing this song, had a very elegant model be- 
fore him, thouffh in a different sort of stanza. It was the 


Written by James Thomson, Esq. Author of the Seasons. 

If those, who live in shepherd's bow'rs. 
Press not the rich and stately bed. 
The new mown hay and breathing flow'rs, 
A softer couch beneath them spread. 

If those, who sit at shepherd's board. 
Sooth not their taste by wanton art ; 
They take what nature's gifts affbrd, 
And take it with a cheerful heart. 


If those, who drain the shepherd's bowl. 
No high and sparkling wines can boast. 
With wholesome cups they cheer the soul. 
And crown them with the village toast. 

If those, who join in shepherd's sport. 
Gay dancing on the daisied ground. 
Have not the splendour of a court. 
Yet love adorns the merry round. 

This air was composed by Mr James Oswald, and publish- 
ed in the first volume of his Pocket Companion, 1741. The 
verses in the Museum, beginning Ye Sylvan powers that 
rule the plains, are selected from a song by an anonymous 
author, printed in Herd's Collection, consisting of six stanzas 
of eight lines, of which only the first, fourth, fifth, and sixth, 
are copied into the Museum, the entu'e song having been 
_ deemed too long for insertion. In the same CoUection, we 
likewise meet with the following stanzas. They appear to 
have been the original words to which the air had been 
adapted, but I have not yet learnt who wrote them. 
Awake, my love, with genial ray. 
The sun returning glads the day ; 
Awake, the balmy zephyr blows. 
The hawthorn blooms, the daisy glows. 
The trees retain their verdant pride. 
The turtle woos his tender bride. 
To love each warbler tunes the song. 
And Forth in dimples glides along. 

more than blooming daisies fair ! 
More fragrant than the vernal air ! 
More gentle than the turtle dove, 
Or streams that murmur thro' the grove ! 
Bethink thee all is on the wing 
Those pleasures wait, on waitmg spring ; 
Then come, the transient bliss enjoy. 
Nor fear what fleets so fast will cloy. 

It will probably occur to the reader, that there is a striking 
similarity between the two stanzas last quoted, and those writ- 


ten by Mallet to the tune of " The Birks of Invermay," be- 
ginning " The smiling morn, the breathing spring." But 
both of these poets are evidently indebted to an inspired au- 
thor for the principal imagery of their songs. '• Rise up, my 
love, my fair one, and come away ; for lo, the winter is past, 
the rain is over and gone ; the flowers appear on the earth ; 
the time of the singing of the birds is come, and the voice 
of the turtle is heard in our land. Arise, my love, my 
fair one, and come away." — Cant, ii. ver. 10 — 13. 

This simple and pathetic melody is not to be found in any 
very early musical publication ; and even the verses, so far as 
I have been able to discover, do not appear in any collec- 
tion prior to that of Herd. It is a certain fact, however, that 
the song has been a great favourite in Scotland for a long 
time past. An English version of the ballad, with the mu- 
sic, appears in the second edition of Horsfield's Songster's 
Companion, 8vo. London, 1772 ; and also in Dale's Collec- 
tion of Scottish Songs, vol. ii. The copy in the Museum is 
taken verbatim from Herd's edition. We have another ver- 
sion in Cromek's Remains of Nithsdale and Galloway Song. 
In a note prefixed to which, he says, that Pinkerton pub- 
lished the spurious verses, beginning, Saw ye my father^ or 
saw ye my mother, six-and-twenty years ago, (viz. in 1784), 
and that though he pronounced even them to constitute an 
excellent song of superlative beauty, yet from that time to 
the present (1810) no exertions have been made to recover 
the original glowing verses now presented to the reader. 


I'll dip, quo' she, yere lang grey wing'. 

All' pouk yere rosie kame. 
If ye daur tak' the gay morn star 

For the morning's ruddie leam ! 
But if ye craw na till the day, 

I'll make your bauk o' silk. 
And ye shall pickle the red cherries, 

And drink the reeking milk ! 


Flee up, flee up, my bonnie grey cock. 

An' craw whan it is day ; 
An' I'll make ye a kame o' the beaten gowd. 

An' yere wings o' the siller gray ! 
But fause, fause proved the bonnie grey cock. 

An hour owre soon crew he ; 
He clappit his wings owre the auld guid wife, 

And an angry wife raise she. 

Wha's that, quo' she, at our door latch ? 

Is it some limmer loon } 
Na, mither, it is the pawky tod 

That howls again' the moon. 
What step is that by our ha' en'. 

Which treads sae light o' spauld ? 
O, mither, it is the herd laddie 

Gaun by to look the fauld ! 

Cromek tells us, that the above verses were communicated 
by Mr Allan Cunningham, and that he had them from his 
father, whose memory was richly fraught with old songs and 
notices regarding them. Any person in the least conversant 
with Scottish song, must at once see that Pinkerton might 
justly have retorted the charge on Cromek ; for if Cunning- 
ham's song be not his own composition, it is at least a mo- 
dern, and a very silly fabrication by another. But why at- 
tack Pinkerton, and leave David Herd and Horsfield out of 
the question, both of whom had published the song long be- 
fore 1748. ?7^ i- 


The air of this song is old ; a bad set of it occurs in Os- 
wald's first Collection, 1 740 ; but he seems to have forgot 
that the tune had been used as a reel as well as a song, in 
Scotland, time out of memory. Some fragments of the an- 
cient song are still preserved. It begins. 
We're a' dry wi' drinking o't. 
We're a' dry wi' drinking o't ; 
The parson kist the fiddler's wife. 
And cou'dna preach for thinking o't. 
Green grow the rashes, O, 
Green grow the rashes, O ; 
A feather-bed is nae sae saft. 
As a bed amang the rashes, 0. 


The remaining lines are quite unfit for insertion, but the 
song seems to have been one of those burlesque and sly sa- 
tires on the real or supposed profligacy of the priests prior to 
the reformation. The tune, however, appears to have been 
also known by the title of " Cow thou me the Rashes green,"" 
quoted in the Complaint of Scotland, in 1549. The verses 
in the Museum were written by Burns, and, if I rightly re- 
member, it was the first song which he contributed to that 


Thbre are two songs in the Museum adapted to this tune. 
The first beginning As I came hy Loch Eroch Side, was 
written, I believe, by Balloon Tytler. The other, begin- 
ning Young Peggy blooms, our bonniest Lass, by Burns. 
Both songs are adapted to the well known modern strathspey, 
called " Loch Eroch Side;"" the subject of which, however, was 
taken from the air of an old Scottish song and dancing tune, 
called, Lm o'er young to marry yet. The words of this 
humorous old song are well known, but they possess more 
wit than delicacy. Loch Erocht, or Ericht, is the name of 
a lake in Perthshire, the largest in the county except Loch 


The editor of the "Musical Biography,"" (2 vols. Lon- 
don, 1814,) says, that Jeremiah Clark, organist of St Paul's, 
composed, for Durfey's comedy of the Fond Husband, or 
the Plotting Sisters, that sweet ballad air, " The bonny grey- 
ey'd Morn," which is introduced into the Beggar's Opera, and 
sung to the words, ' Tis woman that seduces all mankind. 
This information does not appear to be well authenticated. 
The "" Fond Husband" was acted at Drury-Lane, 1676, with 
great applause, and was honoured with the presence of King 
Charles II. three out of its first five nights. Now, if Mr 
Clark composed the music, we may at least suppose him at 


this time to be twenty years old, or that he was born in 1656. 
But Clark, we all know, was a pupil of Dr Blow, and Dr 
Blow was only appointed master of the children of the Cha- 
pel-royal in 1674. And it was in this seminary, and under 
this master, that Clark received his musical education. Dr 
Burney acquaints us, that Clai'k having conceived a violent 
but hopeless passion for a young lady, of rank far superior to 
his own, his sufferings became so intolerable, that he termin- 
ated his existence by suicide, at his own lodgings in St Paul's 
Church-Yard, in July 1707. This rash act certainly looks 
more like that of a young man than of one who, according to 
the former supposition, must then have been at least fifty-one 
years old. There are several of Clark's songs in the " Pills," 
but none of them have the least resemblance to this fine air ; 
and Oswald, in his Collection of Scottish Tunes, calls it, by 
way of distinction, " The old grey-ey'd Morning." 

The tune of the " Bonny grey-ey'd Morn,'' with two indeli- 
cate stanzas, was printed in the first volume of Playford's 
Wit and Mirth, in 1698. In Durfey's subsequent edition of 
that work, in 1719, they are omitted in that volume. The 
song in the Museum was introduced by Ramsay as one of 
the songs in the Gentle Shepherd. 


This charming pastoral melody is ancient. It was for- 
merly called, '' The bonny Bush aboon Traquhair." It ap- 
pears in the Orpheus Caledonius, 1725, adapted to the same 
beautiful stanzas that are inserted in the Museum, beginning 
Hear me, ye nymphs, and every swain^ written by William 
Crawfurd, Esq. author of Tweedside, &c ; but the old song, 
it is believed, is lost. Mr Thomas Walker selected The 
bonny Btish, for a tune to one of his songs, beginning " My 
dearest Johnny, ease my pain," in " The Quaker's Opera," 
acted at Lee and Harper's booth, Bartholomew Fair, in 
1728. Mr Walker, it is believed, was induced to bring out 
this ballad-opera, from the great applause he received in per- 


forming the part of Captain Macheath in Gay's Beggar's 
Opera, in which are also a number of Scottish tunes. 

Traquair is a parish in the county of Peebles, lying on 
the south side of the Tweed, and watered by the rivulet 
Quair. In this parish stands the old mansion of Traquair, 
the residence of the Earl of that name, delightfully situated 
on the banks of the Tweed. On the side of a hill overlook- 
ing the lawn is the old " Bush aboon Traquair," still pointed 
out by a few solitary ragged trees, in former ages the peaceful 
resort of innocence and love. Adjacent to this spot, his 
Lordship has planted a clump of trees, to which he has given 
the name of " The new Bush." 


This is another of those delightful old pastoral melodies, 
which has been a favourite during many generations. It is 
inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725, with the same 
elegant stanzas that appear in the Museum, beginning On 
EttricJc hanks, ae summer's night. Ramsay has left no key 
to discover the author of the song : it does not appeal*, how- 
ever, to be his ; and indeed it is not claimed by his biog- 
rapher as his composition. In the Museum, the fourth hne 
of stanza first, in place of " Came wading barefoot a' her 
lane," was changed into " While wandering through the 
mist her lane ;" but I do not consider it any improvment on 
the elegant simplicity of the original. In other respects the 
verses are correct. From some short hints scattered through 
the ballad, such as. When ye come to the brig of Erne — 
Soon as the sun goes round the loch — When ye sit down to 
spin, ril screw my pipes ,• we may conjecture, that the lover 
of this Ettrick nymph resided on the banks of Loch Erne, in 

The Ettrick, of such poetical celebrity, is a river in Sel- 
kirkshire ; it rises in the parish of the same name, and after 
a winding course of 30 miles in a N. E. direction, during 



which it receives the Yarrow near Phihphaugh, falls into the 
Tweed three miles above Melrose. 


This beautiful melody is ancient, but of the old song only 
a fragment remains, ending with " My dearie, an thou die.' 
Crawfurd, however, has amply repaired the loss in his ele- 
gant song beginning, " I.ove never more shall give me pain," 
first printed in Kamsay's Tea-Table Miscellany in 1724; 
and again, in 1725, in the Orpheus Caledonius, with the 
music; but the editor of this latter work has taken some li- 
berties with the old tune, which have rather disfigured than 
improved it. 

The following is the genuine air, from an old manuscript 
in the editor's possession : 


An ancient Scottish Melody. 




<— »■ 

«-■ « 



" This," says Mr Ritson, in his! historical essay on Scot- 
tish song, page 60, " is an English song of great merit, and 
has been scotified by the Scots themselves. The modern air, 
a fine composition, probably by Oswald, is very different from 
that in the Pills." The air was composed long before Oswald 
was born, for a copy of it, in square-shaped notes, is inserted 
in an old MSS. virginal book in the possession of the editor. 
The tune is here entitled, " Shoe roasse and leit me in." 
The same tune also appears in the Orpheus Caledonius in 
1725. But could any person in his sound senses affirm, that 
such lines as the following, in Playford's edition of the song, 
printed in his fourth volume of " Choice Ayres and Songs," 


with the music, in 1683, were not only English, but English 
of great merit too ? 

But, oh ! at last she proved with bern. 

And sighing sat and dull ; 
And I, that was as much concern'd, 

Lookt then just lilce a fool ! 

The truth is, that the song was originally written by 
Francis Semple, Esq. of Beltrees, about the year 1650. He 
was a grandson of Sir James Semple of Beltrees, the ambas- 
sador to Queen Elizabeth, in the reign of James the Sixth. 
A manuscript copy of Francis Scrapie's Poetical Works was, 
very lately, and, if living, may still be, in the hands of one of 
his descendants, Mrs Campbell of Paisley. Burns says, 
" The old set of this song, which is still to be found in print- 
ed collections, is much prettier than this," meaning that in 
the Museum ; " but somebody, I believe it was Ramsay, took 
it into his head to clear it of some seeming indelicacies, and 
made it at once more chaste and more dull. — Reliqiies.'''' No, 
no, it was not Ramsay. The song still remains in his Tea-Table 
Miscellany and the Orpheus Caledonius, and even in Herd's 
Collection, in its primitive state of indelicacy. The verses in the 
Museum were retouched by an able and masterly hand, 
who has thvis presented us with a song at once chaste and 
elegant, in which all the energetic force and beauty of the 
original are preserved, without a single idea to crimson the 
cheek of modesty, or to cause one pang to the innocent and 
feeling heart. I have no hesitation to assert, that if Burns 
had lived to reconsider the subject, or to superintend the 
publication of his observations on this song before they were 
committed to the public, they would have been widely differ- 
ent from those which have appeared in the Reliques. 


This song is enumerated in the list of those pastoral lyrics 
selected by Mr Ritson, which that gentleman not only consi- 
dered to be genuine, but even peculiar to North Britain. 
These specimens, he was of opinion, were " the production of 


obscure or anonymous authors— of shepherds and milkmaids, 
who actually felt the sensation they describe — of those, in 
short, who were destitute of all the advantages of science and 
education, and perhaps incapable of committing the pure in- 
spirations of nature to writing ; and, in this point of view, it is 
believed, that the English have nothing equal in merit, nor, 
in fact, any thing of the kind." — Essay on Scottish Song, 
page 79 and 80. Though Mr Ritson certainly displays a 
great deal of good nature, and is even more complimentary to 
the Scots here than in any other part of his work, yet he 
never seems to sit right in his saddle. He is either tumbling 
upon the neck, or sliding over the crupper. That the Eng- 
lish have many pastoral songs exquisitely beautiful, no person 
of candour can possibly deny. Even his own Collection of 
English Songs affords the clearest evidence of the fact. If 
these, however, were written by people of fine taste and edu- 
cation in England, so were many of those charming lyrics in 
Scotland. From the instances already given, and still to be 
produced, it has been shewn, that a considerable proportion 
of the favourite songs of Scotland, in place of being the com- 
position of shepherds and milkmaids, were written by per- 
sons of both sexes, [no less eminent for their talents than 
their rank in society. With regard to the composers of the 
melodies peculiar to North and South Britain, that is indeed 
a very distinct question, and a subject which is foreign to the 
present department of this work. But it may be remarked, 
in passing, that the beautiful melody of " Sweet Annie frae 
the Sea-beach came,"" is one of the most unfortunate specimens 
that Mr Ritson could have stumbled upon as the production 
of some simple Scottish shepherd or uneducated milkmaid. 
It is in fact a modern composition, and one, likewise, in 
which more artificial modulation is displayed, than is compati- 
ble either with the knowledge of a shepherd or the sim- 
plicity of his pipe. Nay, so far at least as concerns the me- 
lody, it is not a Scottish song at all. It was composed by 
that jmiinent musician, Maurice Greene, mus. doct, son of 


the Reverend Thomas Greene, vicar of St Olave, Jewry, 
London. Dr Greene gave permission to Henry Robarts to 
put it in his " Calliope, or English Harmony ;■" and it was 
accordingly published in the first volume of that work, with 
the name of its composer, page 200, printed in 1739. The 
words of the song, it is said, were written by Dr John Hoad- 
ley, son of Bishop Hoadley. The melody was afterwards in- 
serted by Mr Oswald in the sixth volume of his Pocket Com- 
panion in 1742, and this circumstance induced subsequent 
editors to consider it a genuine Scottish song. It is a most 
beautiful imitation, however, and is deservedly a great fa- 
vourite on both sides of the Tweed. 

This song is a genuine and beautiful relique of the pas- 
toral muse of our ancestors. It appears in the Orpheus Cal- 
edonius, along with its fine melody, in 1725. In Ramsay's 
Tea-Table Miscellany it is marked as an old song, with ad- 
ditions ; but on comparing it with that inserted by Bishop 
Percy in his Ancient Ballads, who gave it a place in his Collec- 
tion, as he informs us, on account of its great antiquity and 
simplicity of sentiment, these additions are not even discern- 
ible. We can only discover a slight difference in the ortho- 
graphy of the two copies, such as Ramsay's substituting the 
letter y in place of z ; curtailing such letters as appeared to 
be redundant in the old mode of spelling, and by such means 
giving the ballad a more easy and modern shape. Burns re- 
marks, that he is uncertain whether this old and charming air 
is a native of the north or south of Scotland, but that the 
ballad of " Lord Gordon and his three Daughters," appar- 
ently as old as the Ewe-bughts Marion, and which sings to 
the same tune, is evidently of the north. — Reliques. It is a 
matter of very little consequence, to be sure, whether the air 
be a native of the north or south of Scotland. The tune, 
however, has been familiar in the Lowlands for ages, whilst, 
up to the present moment, it is to be found in no Gaelic mu- 


sical publication whatever. The family of Gordon, it must 
also be observed, originally belonged to the south, and both 
the title of Duke and Marquis of that noble family, though 
now transferred to their possessions in the north, are derived 
from their ancient domains in the parish of Gordon in Ber- 



The author of this modern Jacobite song was the Rev. 
Alexander Geddes, D. D. formerly a Catholic priest at Shen- 
val, but afterwards better known as the projector of a new 
translation of the Bible, with annotations. Part of this 
learned and elaborate work was published ; but Dr Geddes 
died before it was completed, and it still remains in an unfi- 
nished state. 

The air of Lewis Gordon is evidently borrowed from the 
old tune of *' Tarry Woo," already noticed. Indeed Burns 
assures us, that he had in his possession one of the earliest 
copies of the song, which had prefixed to it " Tune of Tarry 
Woo ;" and Ritson also takes notice of the same circumstance. 
*' The lad I darna name,'' who wore a star, was the " Che- 
vaUer ;" and the Lewis Gordon, who is likewise alluded to in 
the song, was a younger brother of the then Duke of that 
name. He commanded a detachment for the Chevalier in 
1715; and historians allow that he acquitted himself with 
great judgment and gallantry. He died in France in 1754. 


This tune is very ancient, and some stanzas of the old 
song are still occasionally sung. It begins, 

O WILL ye speak at our town 
As ye come frae the fauld, &c. 

But it is to be regretted, that the delicacy of this ancient 
fragment, like many others, is not equal to its wit and hu- 
mour. The verses in the Museum, beginning My Peggy 
w a young thing, were written by Ramsay, and published 


with the music in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. It is one 
of Patie's songs in the Gentle Shepherd. 


This fine old air, with the verses in the Museum, begin- 
ning, While some Jbr pleasure pawn their health, written by 
Ramsay, appear in the Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. Burns 
wrote a beautiful song to this tune, which is inserted in the last 
volume of the Museum, song 581, where it is adapted to a 
different air ; but as the verses were expressly composed for 
the air of " My Nannie, O," and evidently unite more hap- 
pily with it than any other melody to which it can possibly 
be adapted ; and as Burns subsequently gave his original 
song a few masterly touches, which have considerably heigh- 
tened its effect, we presume it will neither be deemed ill- 
timed nor improper to give it a place in the present part of 
the work. 


By RoBEBT Burns. 

Behind yon hills where Lugar * flows, 
Mang moors and mosses many, ; 
The wintry sun the day has closed. 
And I'll awa to Nannie, 0. 
The westlin wind blaws loud and shrill. 
The night's baith mirk and rainy, O, 
But I'll get my plaid, and out I'll steal. 
And o'er the hill to Nannie, O. 


My Nannie's charming, sweet, and young, 
Nae artfu' wiles to win ye, ; 
May ill befa' the flattering tongue. 
That wad beguile my Nannie, 0. 
Her face is fair, her heart is true. 
And spotless as she's bonny, ; 
The opening gowan, wat wi' dew, 
Nae pui-er is than Nannie, 0. 

• The Lugar is a river in Ayrshire, which takes its rise in the Cumnock lakes, 
and discharges itself into the River Ayr, at Barskimming, 



A country lad is my degree, 
And few there be that ken me, ; 
But what care I how few they be ? 
I'm welcome ay to Nannie, 0. 
My riches a's my penny fee. 
And I maun guide it cannie, O ; 
But warld's gear ne'er troubles me. 
My thoughts are a' my Nannie, 0. 


Our auld gudeman delights to view 
His isheep and kye thrive bonnie, O ; 
But I'm as blythe that bauds his pleugh. 
And has nae care but Nannie, O. 
Come weel, come wae, I care na by, 
I'll tak' what Heav'n will send me, O, 
Nae ither care in life have I, 
But live and love my Nannie, Oi 


Dr Blacklock informed Burns, that this song, which is 
adapted to a wild and plaintive Gaelic air, in the Museum, 
but quite different from that which appears in Oswald's Col- 
lection, was composed on the horrid massacre at Glencoe, in 
1691, when thirty-eight innocent and unsuspecting persons, 
including the chief of the clan, were inhumanly butchered 
in their beds by a military party under Campbell of Glenlyon. 
I Neither age, youth, nor sex, were spared in the dreadful 
I carnage, and many who escaped immediate death, afterwards 
I perished in the mountains from the inclemency of the weather, 
I hunger, and fatigue. For a particular account of this atro- 
f cious butchery, -w'hich will remain an eternal stain on the 
I reign and memory, and on the ministers of King William 
I III, see SmoUet and other historians. 
;; Glencoe is a vale in Argyleshire, near the head of Loch 

* There is some diversity of opinion with regard to the meaning of the burden 
of this lament. Some consider it to be a corruption of the Gaelic words " O hone 
a rie," signifying, alas, viy prince or chief. Others again suppose it to be a vi- 
tiated pronunciation of " Ochoin och rie," a Gaelic exclamation, generally ex- 
pressive of deep sorrow and affliction, similar to that of Oh .' my heart ! This, 
indeed, seems to be the proper interpretation. 


Etive, and famous for being the birth-place of Ossian, as ap- '; 
pears from several passages in the poems of that ancient bard I 
and celebrated warrior. 

In his Chronicle of Scottish Poetry, vol. iii. p. 274, Sib- \ 
bald states it as his opinion, that one of Wedderburn's godly 
ballads, first printed about the year 1549, and again by Ro- 
bert Smyth at Edinburgh, 1599, was sung to this old tune. 
It begins, 

My lufe murnis for me, for me. 
My lufe that murnis for me ; 
I'm not kinde, hes not in minde. 
My lufe that tnurnia for me. 

&c. &c. &c. 

He likewise observes, that there is some appearance that the 
hint had been taken from 

He's low down, he's in the broom. 
That's waiting for me. 

This fine old ballad, beginning My daddy is a canfcer'd 
carle, does not appear in the Tea-Table Miscellany. David 
Herd rescued it from the stalls, and gave it a place in his 
Collection. Oswald has inserted a wretched copy of the 
melody in his Caledonian Pocket Companion, under the title 
of J/y Love's in the Broom. In the Museum there is a 
genuine copy both of the words and air. 



This beautiful air is unquestionably very old. Sibbald 

was also of opinion, that another of Wedderburn's spiritual , 

ballads, in 1549, beginning, l 

Ah ! my love ! leif me not, | 

Lief me not, lief me not, I 

Ah ! my love ! leif me not, I 

Thus mine alone. I 

&c. &c. &c, ] 

was sung to the original air of "^ I'll never leave thee," the l 
music of which is probably a little corrupted. This opi- 
nion appears to be correct, for this identical tune is mention- 
ed in Geddes' " Saint's Recreation," written in 1673, as ap- 

94* xc. — I'll never leave thee. 

pears from the approbations of the Rev. WiUiam Raitt, and 
the Rev. WiUiam Colvill, Primar of the College of Edin- 
burgh, both of which are dated in August, 1G73. This 
work was afterwards printed in 1683. Several of Geddes"'s 
pious songs are directed to be sung to popular tunes, and he 
vindicates the practice in the following words: " I have the 
precedent of some of the most pious, grave, and zealous 
divines in the kingdom, who to very good purpose have com- 
posed godly songs to the tunes of such old songs as these,, 
"J^he honny broom — I'll never leave thee — Well all go pull 
the hadder, and such like, without any challenge or disparage- 

The chorus of the old popular song runs, 

Leave thee^ leave thee, lad, 
I'll never leave thee. 
Gang a the warld as it will, 
I'll never leave thee. 

Ramsay wrote a poetical dialogue between Johnny and 
Nelly, beginning, " Tho' for seven years and mair,'' to this 
tune, in which he has introduced nearly the whole of the old 
chorus or burden. Watts printed this dialogue, with the 
tune, in his Musical Miscellany, vol. iv. London, 1730. The 
song in the Museum, beginning " One day I heard Mary 
say,'' was written by Crawfurd. It was printed in the Tea- 
Table Miscellany in 1724, and again in 1725, with the music, 
in the Orpheus Caledonius. Burns did not think it one of 
Crawfurd's happiest compositions : " What an absurdity," 
says he, " to join such names as Adonis wad. Mary together.'' 
Reliques. This is surely a very venial fault. It is like the 
discovery of a mote flickering in a sunbeam. 


The title of this song should have been. Beneath a green 
Shade, written by Thomas Blacklock, D. D. to the tune of 
The Braes of Ballenden ; for Dr B's song has no relation to 
the Braes of Ballenden whatever. The composition of this 
fine air has been attributed to Oswald, but upon what au- 
hority I am at a loss to discover. The editor of Albyn's 


Anthology, in the introduction to that work, asserts that 
Oswald was the composer in the following terms : " In the 
year 1759, James Oswald, one of our most successful musical 
adventurers in London, published his Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, in twelve thin octavo volumes, (usually bound up 
in two) in which he appears in the double capacity of author 
and editor ; he is among the very few to whom we can trace 
the authenticity of our national melodies. Had he com- 
posed nothing else but The Braes of Ballenden, and the air 
to Lovely Nymph, inti'oduced in the burletta of Midas, his 
name would live as lona: as a relish existed for genuine Scot- 
tish melody ; but he composed several other pretty enough 
pieces of vocal and instrumental music, which do him equal 
credit ; and, in truth, his country may proudly class him 
with King James the First, the Earl of Kelly, and a few 
more, whose works remain as never-fading testimonies of their 
brilliant talents, and love of the muse." 

Without entering into any comparison between such an 
accomplished prince as James I. of Scotland, and James Os- 
wald the musician, it may be remarked, that Oswald 
published his Pocket Companion in periodical numbers, 
which he calls volumes, each consisting of from 32 to SG 
pages ; six of these in two parts, called his First and Second 
Collection, price ten shillings, were advertised in the Scots 
Magazine for November 174^. In the fifth number, ap- 
pears the tune of " The Braes of Ballandine," but he makes 
no claim to it by the asterism, which in the Index is annex- 
ed to his own compositions, neither is it ascribed to him in 
the Collection of M'Gibbon. The air, " Lovely Nymph," is 
generally attributed to the celebrated J. J. Rosseau, as well 
as that of " Pray Goody, please to moderate," another song 
in the musical burletta of Midas, written by Mr Kane 
O'Hara, and acted at Covent Garden in 1764. Oswald 
composed a very pretty tune, called, " Lovely Nancy," in 
comphment, no doubt, to some " lovely nymph," but it 
is quite a different air from that in Midas. 




This tune is of considerable antiquity. The verses in the 

Museum, beginning My Patie is a Lover gay^ were written 

by Ramsay as a song for Patie in the Gentle Shepherd. 

There was a much older Scottish song, however, than that 

of Ramsay, adapted to this tune, of which the following lines 

are the chorus. 

O CORN riggs and rye rigs. 
And corn rigs are boiinie. 
And gin ye meet a bonnie lass, 
Prin up her cockernony. 

The tune appears in Craig'*s Collection, in 1730. Craig 
was a very old man when he published his Collection, for he 
was one of the principal violin-players at the Edinburgh con- 
cert in 1695. 

The Grub-street gentry, in derision of the Scots, clothed 

this fine old tune in a garb of their own peculiar manufacture. 

The following sample, taken from their pattern-book, " Mirth 

and Wit," vol i. p. 133, London 1698, may serve as a speci- 

me n. 


Sawkey was tall and of noble race. 
And lov'd me better than any eane ; 
But now he ligs by another lass. 
And Sawney will ne'er be my love agen. 
I gave him fine Scotch sark and band, 
I put 'em on with mine own hand ; 
I gave him house, I gave him land ; 
Yet Sawney will ne'er be my love agen, 

Mr Gay selected this tune for one of his songs in his 

musical opera of " Polly," beginning " Should I not be 

bold when honour calls," printed, but not acted, in 1 729. 



The title of the song, in the Museum, ought to have been 
" My Sheep I've forsaken," written by Sir Gilbert Elliot of 
Minto, Bart, to the tune of " My apron, Dearie." This is a 



very elegant pastoral song, and reflects much honour on the 
poetical taste of the worthy composer. 

The old words and music are preserved in the Orpheus 
Caledonius, 1725. Another edition of the song, with con- 
siderable alterations, perhaps improvements, may be seen in 
Yair's Collection, vol ii. printed at Edinburgh in 1751, which 
Herd has exactly copied into his later Collection in 1776. 
But the old song, even with all the improvements it has re- 
ceived, would not be quite palatable to the taste of the pre- 
sent age of refinement. It is on that account omitted in this 

In a late publication of Gaelic Melodies, (see Eraser's Gae- 
lic Airs, Edinburgh 1816,) a different set of this air makes its 
appearance in two florid strains, evidently modern, under 
the title of N't aparan goirid, or, " The short Apron ;" and 
the editor hazards an opinion, that the Lowlanders are indebt- 
ed to his country for the original melody. That the former 
were capable of composing the most exquisite pastorals that 
have ever been produced in any age or clime, will not surely 
be called in question. Moreover, the tune of " My apron, 
dearie," appears in the Orpheus Caledonius, where it is pre- 
served in its primitive state, consisting of one simple strain, 
of sixteen bars in treble time. Craig also published this 
melody in his Collection of " Scots Tunes,"" published at 
Edinburgh in 1730, where it first appears, with a second 
part, added by himself ; but it is only a slight variation of the 
subject of the original strain. This venerable musician as- 
sures us, in his dedication to the lords and gentlemen of the 
Musical Society of Mary's Chapel, with whom he had then 
been acquainted upwards of forty years, that the tunes in his 
Collection, are the native and genuine product of the country. 
It will, therefore, require better evidence than a vague asser- 
tion made in 1816, to convince us, that this melody was origi- 
nally imported from the Highlands. A learned and ingeni- 
ous correspondent has favoured me with the following re- 
marks on the tune of " My apron dearie." " The internal 


evidence," he says, *' appears to me strong for its being a 
native of the south. I never heard an air more completely 
of that sweetly pastoral kind, that belongs to the shepherds 
of Ettrick and Yarrow. If it was originally of Sir G. Elliots' s 
country, it would naturally account for his writing better 
words to an air, which, it is probable, he admired from his 
infancy." To these observations, I shall only add, that a 
very slight comparison of the tune, as it stands in the Or- 
pheus Caledonius in one simple and elegant strain, with that 
in Eraser's book of two parts, both of which are represented 
with diminuendos^ crescendos^ expressivos, pauses, swells, 
shakes, he. &c. will at once satisfy every person of com- 
mon sense and integrity, both with regard to the country 
and to the priority of the two melodies. 



This fine old melody, as well as Ramsay's song, beginning 
Farewell to Lochaber, and farewell my Jean, both appear in 
the Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. From the import of the 
song, it would seem that Ramsay had composed it in compli- 
ment to some young military friend, probably a native of 
Lochaber, then about to leave his country and his Jean to 
join the British forces on the continent, under John Duke of 
Marlborough, whose glorious, though bloody campaigns, 
will long be remembered. This is another of Craig's genuine 
Scottish melodies, but the old original song is perhaps lost. 

In almost every recent copy of the tune called Lochaber, 
a flat seventh is introduced in the middle of the second strain ; 
but it is neither to be found in the old set of the air in the 
Orpheus Caledonius, nor in Craig's Collection. Here we 
have one proof, that although the old melodies have gener- 
ally been pretty closely adhered to, they have, in some cases, 
been retouched by modern artists. Some of these alterations, 
like that just alluded to, are manifest improvements, but in 
many other instances, they are the very reverse, as the pastoral 
simplicity of the tune, by injudicious alterations, is frequently 


destroyed. In the Museum, the note E, answering to the 
verb bore in the second strain of Lochaber, ought to be flat. 
It had been overlooked by Mr Clark when revising the proof 
sheets ; but it is easily corrected with a pen. 

This old air was formerly called " My father^'s a delver of 
dykes ;" from a curious old song, preserved in the Orpheus 
Caledonius in 1725, a copy of which is annexed. 


My daddie's a delver of dykes. 
My minnie can card and spin. 
And I'm a bonnie young lass. 
And the siller comes linken in ; 
The siller comes linken in, 
And it is fu' fair to see ; 
And its wow-wow-wow. 
What ails the lads at me ? 


Whenever our bawtie does bark. 

Then fiast to the door I rin. 

To see gin ony young spark 

Will light and venture in ; 

But ne'er a ane comes in, , j 

Though mony a ane gaes by ; 

Syne ben the house I rin. 

And a wearie wight am I. 

I had ane auld wife to my grannie. 
And wow gin she kept me lang. 
But now the carlin's dead. 
And I'll do what I can. 
And I'll do what I can, 
Wi' my twenty pounds and my cow. 
But wow, its ane unco thing. 
That naebody comes to woo. 

Ramsay wrote an introductory stanza to this old song, be- 
ginning Ti's / have seven braw nsw gowfis ; and in place 
of the last stanza, which he suppressed, he added two of his 
own, beginning When I was at vit/ first prayers. The song, 
thus altered, he entitled, " Slighted Nancy," to the tune of 
The kirk wad let me be. The editor of the Orpheus Caledo- 
nius, however, adhered to the words and tune of the old song, 


and very properly rejected Ramsay's verses, of which the two 
last are certainly objectionable. 

About the year 1700, a certain lady of high rank and fa- 
shion fell in love with a fine young man of an inferior station 
in life, he being one of her father's tenants. She married him, 
however, in direct opposition to the will of her family, and 
this circumstance gave occasion to the humorous but vulgar 
ballad of " The mucking o' Geordie's byre." It begins 

The mucking o' Geordie's byre. 
And shooling the gruip sae clean. 
Has gard me weet my cheeks. 
And greet with baith my een. 
It was not my father's will. 
Nor yet my mither's desire. 
That e'er I should file my fingers 
Wi' mucking o' Geordie's byre. 

A contemporary bard, however, took up the cudgels for 
Geordie in a very spirited manner. His ballad concludes 

The lads that gae courting the lasses 
Had need to be c§nny and slee. 
Or else they'll be guided like asses. 
Gin they be as sUly as me. 
I courted a lassie for siUer, 
And she was baith saucy and spree. 
But when I was buckled until her. 
The devU ae bodle had she. 

This beautiful air, when played slow, is very plaintive, but 
the songs to which it has hitherto been united are all of a very 
humorous cast. The tune appears in Mrs Crokafs book, in 
1709, under the title of " The three good Jellows^'' which 
must have been the name of another old and now forgotten 
song, to the same melody. The verses to which it is adapted in 
the Museum, beginning " As I went over yon meadow,' 
were written by Mr James Ty tier, with the exception of two 
lines, taken from the old chorus. 


. There is as rich a vein of lively and innocent humour in 
this pretty little ballad as in any to be found in the whole 


compass of the Museum. It begins Gin I had a wee house 
and a canty wee fire. It was picked up and published by- 
Herd, but the author is still anonymous. Some stanzas also, 
to the same tune, were written by Miss Janet Graham of 
Dumfries, a maiden lady, who lived to a considerable age, 
although much afflicted with an asthmatic complaint, to 
which she ultimately fell a victim. Being naturally of a cheer- 
ful disposition, she often attempted to beguile her sufferings 
by composing Scottish songs and poems of humour. As Miss 
Graham's song is highly spoken of by Burns, it is annexed. 
It was originally published in Herd's Collection, vmder the 
title of The Wayward Wi/e, but rather in an imperfect state, 
two lines of the second stanza being wholly omitted. 



Alas, my son, you little know 

The sorrows that from wedlock flow; 

Farewell to every day of ease. 

When you have got a wife to please. 
Sae bide you yet, and bide you yet, 
Ye little ken what's to betide you yet ; 
The half of that will gane you yet. 
If a wayward wife obtain you yet. 

Your ain experience is but small. 
As yet you've met with little thrall ; 
The black cow on your foot ne'er trode. 
Which gars you sing alang the road. 

Sae bide you yet, ^c. 

Sometimes the rock, sometimes the reel. 
Or some piece of the spinning wheel. 
She'll drive at you, my bonny chiel. 
And send you headlangs to the de'il, 

Sae bide you yet, S(e. 


When I, like you, was young and free, 
I valued not the proudest she. 
Like you, I vainly boasted then. 
That men alone were born to reign. 

Sae bide you yet, S^c. 



Great Hercules, and Samson, too. 
Were stronger men than I or you. 
Yet they were baffled by their dears. 
And felt the distaff and the sheers. 

Sae bide you yet, S^c. 


Stout gates of brass, and well-built walls. 
Are proof 'gainst swords and cannon balls ; 
But nought is found by sea or land. 
That can a wayward wife withstand. 

Sae bide you yet, A'C 


These three humorous stanzas, beginning / married with 
a scolding wife thejburteenth of November, were written by 
Burns. They are adapted to the well-known air of Maggie 
Lauder. For an account of this tune, see Notes on Song No 

544. .'^■■ 


This air appears in Skene's MSS. under the title of " Adew 
Dundee." It is therefore certain that the song was a well- 
known favourite in Scotland long before the year 1598. The 
old song, which is certainly none of the most delicate, was 
travestied by the Grub-street junto, who, as usual, made it 
ten times worse. Those who have any curiosity to see their 
pitiful production, will find it in " Wit and Mirth," vol. iii. 
first edition, 1703, under the title of Jockey's escape from 
Dundee. It begins. 

Where got'st thou that haver-mill bonack ? 

Blind booby, can'st thou not see ? 

I'se got it out of a Scotchman's wallet. 

As he lig lousing himself under a tree ! 

This elegant travestie thus concludes. 

With sword ready drawn, they rode to the gate. 
Where being denied an entrance thro', 
The master and man, they fought at that rate, 
That some ran away, and others they slew. 
Thus Jocky, the laird, and Sawney, the man, 
They valiantly fought, as Highlanders can ; 
In spite of the loons, they set themselves free. 
And so bid adieu to bonny Dundee. 


The song in the Museum, with the exception of the first 
four lines, beginning where did you get that haver-meal 
bannocJCf which formed part of the first stanza of the old bal- 
lad, was wholly written by Burns, The last verse is iracom- 
monly pretty. 

My blessings upon thy sweet wee lippie. 

My blessings upon thy bonny e'e bree, 

Thy smiles are sae like my blithe sodger laddie ; 

Thou's ay the dearer and dearer to me. 

But I'll big a bower on yon bonny banks. 

Where Tay rins wimplin by sae clear. 

And I'll dead thee in the tartan sae fine, 

Aild mak thee a man like thy daddie dear ! 

Burns sent a copy of the first draught of his improved ver- 
sion to his friend Mr Cleghorn, with the following laconic 
epistle : 

*' Dear Cleghorn, you will see by the above that I have 
added a stanza to ' Bonny Dundee.' If you think it will 
do, you may set it agoing 

Upon a ten string'd instrument. 

And on a psaltery. R. B, 

" To Mr Cleghorn, farmer. God bless the trade." 

Mr Gay selected " Bonnie Dundee" as a tune for one of 
his songs in the Beggar's Opera, beginning " The charge is 
prepared, the lawyers are met," acted at London in 1728. 
But it was known in England long before that time, as it is 
printed in Play ford's Dancing Master, in the year 1657. 



This song, beginning Down the hum, and through the 
mead, is an Anglo-Scottish production of considerable merit. 
It was first introduced and sung by Miss Cately, as a " Fa- 
vourite new Scotch song," in the opera of Love in a Village, 
and was received with great applause. This opera, by Mr 
Bickerstaffe, was first acted at Covent Garden, London, in 
1762. The last line of every stanza of Johnny and Mary 
tells us, that Mary wiped her honny mow- This has always 
been considered very faulty and disagreeable, more especially 


as it 19 repeated no less than four times in singing the song. 
It reminds one of Solomon's observation on a certain charac- 
ter, that " She eateth and wipeth her mouth, and saith I 
have done no wickedness." If the composer had only sub- 
stituted a better line in place of this, the song would have 
been much improved, and nearly faultless. Miss Cately, it 
would seem, had introduced Johnny and Mary as an extra 
song in Love in a Village; for it is not to be found in the list 
of those songs which Bickerstaffe originally selected for this 


[ * 105 ] 




The authority for ascribing this song- to Mr Macvicar 
is Burns's MS. note, in his interleaved copy of the 
Museum, which states that he had the information from 
Dr Blacklock. (Cromek's Reliques of Burns, p. 195.) 
But no particulars respecting Macvicar have been disco- 
vered. The song was first published, accompanied with 
the music, in Ruddiman's Edinburgh Magazine for April 
1758. It next occurs in a collection, of which only one 
volume appeared, under the title of " The Lark : being a 
Select Collection of the most celebrated and newest Songs, 
Scots and English. Vol. I. Edinburgh, printed for W. Gor- 
don, bookseller in the Parliament Close, 1765." 12mo. 


There is no kind of evidence for attributing a single 
Scotish melody to David Bizzio. Thomson, indeed, in 
his Orpheus Caledonius, 1725, ascribed to " David Rezzio" 
this and six other old tunes ; but, in republishing that work 
in 1733, the name was withdrawn. Other tunes under the 
name of " Rizo," by Oswald, were subsequently published. 
These were his own compositions ; as a friend of his, in 
1741^ ofl his leaving Edinburgh, says. 

When wilt thou teach our soft jiEidian fair. 
To languish at a false Sicilian air ; 
* H 


Or when some tender tune compose again, 
And cheat the town wV David Rizo's name ? 

See also the Chronological List, annexed to the Preface of 
this work. 

In asserting this to be an old tune, Mr Stenhouse was 
correct ; for we find '' An thou wer myn oun thing," in a 
MS. Lute-book, written at Aberdeen by Robert Gordon 
of Straloch, in the year 1627. 

The author of this song, the Rev. James Muirhead, 
descended from an ancient family, was the son of Muir- 
head of Logan, and born in the year 1740 ; or, according 
to the author of the Literary History of Galloway, in 1742. 
He was educated at the College of Edinburgh ; was licensed 
to preach in 1769 ; and ordained Minister of Urr in the 
year 1770. In 1794, the University of Edinburgh con- 
ferred on him the honorary degree of D.D. ; and at a more 
advanced period of life (in 1806), the celebrated linguist 
Dr Alexander Murray was appointed his assistant and suc- 
cessor. In 1795, at the controverted election for the Dum- 
fries boroughs, Dr Muirhead fell under the lash of Burns, 
who then printed, for private distribution, several ballads in 
the shape of broadsides, which gained him less credit for 
wit than for ill-nature. Dr Muirhead replied in some viru- 
lent lines, which reflect no credit upon their author. See 
Chambers's Lives, vol. i. p. 440 ; and Motherwell's edition 
of Burns, vol. i. p. 310. Allan Cunningham, both in his 
" Songs of Scotland," and in his edition of Burns, calls him 
by mistake William ; and Murray says he died in 1806. His 
death is thus recorded in the Scots Magazine (vol. Ixx. p. 
479), " 1808, May 16, At Spottes-hall, Dumfries-shire, the 
Rev. Dr James Muirhead, of Logan, Minister of the Gos- 
pel at Urr, in the 68th year of his age, and 38th of his 



" O, OPEN the door, love Gregory, 
O open, and let me in — 
The wind blows through my yellow hair, 
And the dew draps o'er my chin. 

" This is much better than ' the rain rains on my scarlet 
robes,' and is as generally sung by the people of Galloway 
and Dumfries-shire."— (C. K. S.) 



" Ferdinando Tenducci This was, as far as I know, 

the only very celebrated Italian singer who ever visited Scot- 
land. His arrival is thus announced in " The Edinburgh 
Evening Courant, Monday, May 16, 1758." " Last night, 
arrived here from Ireland, Mr Tenducci, the celebrated 
singer." Along with him he brought his wife, whom he had 
married in Ireland ; she also sang in public — but with a very 
indifferent voice, as I have been told by those who heard it ; 
her extraordinary Platonic passion ended in an elopement 
with a gallant, and in a divorce, which makes a figurer in the 
Trials for adultery, &c. Tenducci was a very handsome 
man- — she, a pretty, modest looking girl. He taught music 
while in Edinburgh ; and published a folio volume of his 
own compositions of which this is the title—" A Collec- 
tion of Lessons for the Harpsichord, or Piano and Forte, 
composed by Ferdinando Tenducci. Dedicated to the Right 
Honourable Lady Hope. Printed for the author, and to 
be got at his lodgings, opposite Lord Milton's, Cannon- 
gate ; at Mrs Phinn's, and Richard Carmichael, engraver, 
back of the Guard, and at R. Bremner's music-shop." 
Minuets are mingled with the sonatas, but only two have 
the names of ladies prefixed — Ladies Hope and Cunning- 
ham (Miss Myrton of Gogar). Lady Cunningham's mi- 
nuet, with variations, is extremely beautiful," — (C. K. S.) 



Richard Hewitt was a native of a village near Carlisle, 
and was taken when a boy to lead blind Dr Blacklock, who 
resided in Cumberland, during the earlier part of his life. 
Finding him to be a youth of promising dispositions, he 
instructed him in various languages ; and Hewitt, on leaving 
his service, addressed some verses to Mr Blacklock, which 
bear testimony to the warm affection he entertained for his 
master. Mr Henry Mackenzie, in his edition of Blacklock's 
Poems, Edinburgh, 1793, informs us, that Hewitt subse- 
quently became Secretary to Lord Milton (then Lord Jus- 
tice-Clerk, and Sub-Minister for Scotland, under Archibald, 
Duke of Argyle) ; but that the fatigue of that station hurt 
his health, and he died in 1764. 



Thomas Fraser, whom Mr Stenhouse mentions in this 
note, died in 1825. See note in Chambers's " Scottish 
Songs," p. 279, Edinburgh, 1829, 2 vols., 8vo. 


woo'd and married an' a'. 
Mr Stenhouse, in his Illustrations, uniformly quotes 
Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany as having been published 
in 1724. The first volume certainly appeared at Edinburgh 
in that year ; but the second, third, and fourth volumes were 
published separately, in 24mo, at various intervals. " A 
New Miscellany of Scots Songs," printed at London in 
1727, contains a selection of the Scotish songs in the first 
two volumes. The Tea-Table Miscellany, volume third, 
was printed at Edinburgh for Allan Ramsay, in 1727 ; but 
at what time the Fourth volume was puiblished I have not 
been able to ascertain, having only seen a very imperfect 
copy of the original edition. The first collected edition 

woo D AND MARRIED AN a'. * 109 

of this popular work contains the three volumes in one, 
" London, printed for and sold by A. Millar, 1733," 12mo. 
It is called " The Ninth Edition, being the compleatest 
and most correct of any yet published, by Allan Ramsay." 
The accuracy of this statement I should be disposed to ques- 
tion. On the other hand, there are three distinct editions, 
each professing to be " The Twelfth Edition," viz. at Glas- 
gow, 1753; Edinburgh, 1760; and London, 1763. The 
eighteenth, and probably the latest edition, appeared at 
Edinburgh, 1 792. All the editions, subsequent to that of 
1733, contain the four volumes of the collection. 

" Burns is not quite correct in his assertion that the 
Scotish Muses were all Jacobites — a song, beginning ' The 
cats hae kittled in Charlie s wigj' is certainly the wretched 
effusion of a Scotish Hanoverian." — (C. K. S.) 
" N.B. Our ancient Border rhyme runs thus — 

Tillielute, tillielute, tillielute of Bowelaw, 

Our cat's kittled in Archie's wig ; 
Tillielute, tillielute, tillielute of Boyrelaw, 

Four of them naked, and four of them clad. 

I am afraid the Scots Hanoverian had been but a plagiary 
after all."— (MS. Note by Sir Walter Scott, in 1821). 


Mr Stenhouse, in this note and elsewhere, refers to a 
MS. music-book, as in his own possession, written in tabla- 
ture for the lute, and supposes it to be as old as the reign 
of Queen Mary. As he mistook the age of other MSS., 
I suspect that he imagined this one to be of much too early 
a date ; but unfortunately it is not known what has become 
of that MS. 




The MS. music-book, with the autograph of " Mrs 
Crockat, 1709," which is frequently mentioned by Mr 
Stenhouse, is now in the possession of Charles Kirkpatrick 
Sharpe, Esq. 


Mr Stenhouse formed an erroneous opinion of the age 
of the MS. collection of tunes, preserved in the Advocates' 
Library, and described in this note. The volume consists 
of seven (not six) little books bound in one ; having on the 
first leaf the signature, " Magister Johannes Skeine," by 
whom there can be little doubt that the collection was 
formed. This person, however, was not Sir John Skene 
of Curriehill, " when he was a very young man," but John 
Skene of Hallyards, in Mid-Lothian, the second son of that 
eminent lawyer ; and instead of being written " prior to 
1598," as stated in Note cxxxi, or " circa 1570," as in 
Note DLxxxix, it belongs to the early part of the seven- 
teenth century, apparently about the year 1615. 

The MS. collection, however, is one of great importance, 
as it contains a number of popular Scotish airs of earlier 
date, and in a more genuine form than they are known to 
have been elsewhere preserved. A volume, containing the 
several Scotish airs, (which in the MS. are written in tabla- 
ture for the Mandour,) rendered into modern notation, is 
now on the eve of publication, by William Dauney, Esq., 
Advocate, accompanied with an elaborate dissertation on 
the origin of Scotish Music :--such a work cannot fail to be 
of great interest to all lovers of our National Melodies. 



" That person of the Kenmure family alluded to in the 
tradition, was most probably Robert, fourth Viscount of 


Kenmure, who suffered many hardships on account of his 
loyalty, and was excepted out of Cromwell's act of grace 
and pardon, 1654. He died at Greenlaw, without issue, 
1663."_(C. K. S.) 

" Burns says nothing about the authorship of this hu- 
morous song ; but we may mention that it, and its coun- 
terpart, ' John Hielandman's remarks on Glasgow,' are 
from the pen of Dougald Graham, Bellman in Glasgow, 
and author of the facetious histories of ' Lothian Tam,' 
' Leper the Tailor,' ' Simple John and his Twelve Misfor- 
tunes,' ' Jocky and Maggy's Courtship,' 'John Cheap 
the Chapman,' ' The Comical Sayings of Paddy from 
Cork, with his Coat buttoned Behind,' ' John Falkirk's 
Carritches,' ' Janet Clinker's Orations in the Society of 
Clashin' Wives,' and a ' Metrical History of the Rebel- 
lion in 1745,' in which he had a personal share, &c. &c. 
His works, in the form of Penny Histories, have long formed 
staple articles in the hawker's basket ; and while the classic 
presses of Paisley, Stirling, and Falkirk, have groaned 
with them, the sides of the Scottish lieges have been con- 
vulsed with them for the greater part of a century." — 
(Edition of Burns, by Motherwell, vol. v. p. 299.) 

In the Paisley Magazine, 1828- (of which he was editor), 
Mr Motherwell gave an interesting account of Dougald 
Graham, proving that he was the writer of the above 
' chap books,' which contain a great deal of very coarse 
humour ; but which, for the credit of our peasantry, are 
less sought for than formerly. Graham was born about 
1724, and died in the year 1779. His ' History of the 
Rebellion,' 1745, was a favourite work of Sir Walter 
Scott's, and was first printed under the following title : — 

" A full, particular and true Account of the Rebellion, 
in the years 1745-6. 

Composed by the Poet D. Graham, 
In Stirlingshire he lives at hame. 
To the Tune of The gallant Grahams. To which is add- 


ed, Several other Poems by the same Author. Glascfow, 
printed and sold by James Duncan, &c., 1746. Price 
fourpence half-penny." 12mo, pp. 84. 

In a metrical "Account of the Author," Graham mentions 
that he was born near Raploch, in Stirlingshire, and that he 
remained as a servant at Campsie. But the second edition, 
1752, bears " Printed for and sold by Dougal Graham, mer- 
chant in Glasgow." In the third edition, 1774, the work 
was entirely re- written, and not improved, and it is this text 
that has been followed in six or seven later impressions. The 
first edition is so extremely rare, that only one copy is known 
to be preserved, and, as a literary curiosity, it might be worth 
reprinting ; although it demolishes the fine story of the 
Author's difficulty in obtaining the Bellman's place from 
the Glasgow Bailies, on account of his being a Jacobite, 
and having joined the Pretender's army. 


" Perhaps both the author of ' The young Laird and 

Edinburgh Katy' and Bishop Percy took the idea of their 

ballads from a song in Lee's beautiful tragedy of Theodo- 

sius, or the Force of Love : — 

Can'st thou, Marina, leave the world. 
The world that is devotion's bane ?— 

Can you your costly robes forbear 

To live with us in poor attire?" &c. &c (C. K. S.) 


John Lord Yester, second Marquis of Tweeddale, 
died at Yester, 20th of April, 1713, in the 68th year of his 
age. Scot of Satchel, in the dedication of his Rhyming 
History of the name of Scot, in 1688, compliments his 
Lordship for his poetical abilities. For his character, see 
Macky's Memoirs, p. 186, and Douglas's Peerage, by 
Wood, vol. ii. p. 610. 

TWEEDSIDE. * 1 13 

Mr Stenhouse and other editors have asserted that Burns 
was mis-informed in regard to the author of " Tweedside," 
and of some of our finest pastoral lyric poems, and state that 
the poet's name was not Robert, but William Crawfurd 
of Auchinames. The only person of that name, mentioned 
in the genealogical account of this family, is said to have 
married Helen, daughter of Sir Thomas Burnet, M.D., an 
eminent physician in Edinburgh, in the reign of Charles II. ; 
and to have died without issue during his father's life. (Craw- 
furd's Renfrewshire, by Robertson, p. 371.) This seems 
to apply to William Crawfurd, younger of Auchinames, 
who died previous to 4th July, 1695, when his father 
Archibald Crawfurd was served his heir. This, however, 
would be much too early for the writer of the fine songs 
which appeared in the Tea- Table Miscellany. In calling ' 
the poet William, Mr S. and others appear to have relied 
on the opinion of Lord Woodhouselee, who quotes a letter 
from Hamilton of Bangour to Henry Home, afterwards 
Lord Kames, in July 1739, where he says, "J have made 
the corrections on the moral part of Contemplation, and in 
a post will send it to Will. Crawford, who has the rest, 
and will transmit it to you. I shall write to him fully on 
the subject." " It is pleasing to remark (Lord Wood- 
houselee adds), that the Will. Crawford here mentioned 
was the author of the beautiful pastoral ballad of Tweedside, 
which. Math the aid of its charming melody, will probably 
live as long as the language is understood." (Life of Lord 
Kames, 8vo edition, vol. i. p. 97.) The letter in question 
refers to Hamilton's poem, which was written in 1739, and 
printed in 1744 ; and the William Crawford here mentioned 
was a merchant in Glasgow, who died probably about 1750. 
In the second edition of Hamilton's Poems, 1758, there is 
a dedication prefixed, " To the Memory of Mr William 
Crawford, merchant in Glasgow, the friend of Mr Hamil- 

It is singular that Lord Woodhouselee and subsequent 


writers should have overlooked the letters of Ramsay of 
Ochtertyre to Burns, which were printed by Currie, and 
which I think ascertain beyond all doubt that the writer of 
' Tweedside,' ' The Bush aboon Traquair,' and other songs 
published by Ramsay in the Tea- Table Miscellany, was 
Robert Crawfurd, a cadet of the family of Drumsoy. 
As these Songs appeared in 1724, he was probably born 
about the close of the Seventeenth Century. 

Mr Ramsay of Ochtertyre, in a letter, dated 22d of 
October, 1787, says, " 'Twas only yesterday I got Colonel 
Edmonstoune's answer, that neither the words of ^ Down the 
burn^ Davie,'' nor ^Daintie Davie^ (I forget which you men- 
tioned), were written by Colonel G. Crawford. Next time 
I meet him I will enquire about his cousin's poetical 
talents." In another letter, addressed to Dr Blacklock, 
from Ochtertyre, 27th of October, 1787, Mr Ramsay says, 
" You may tell Mr Burns when you see him, that Colonel 
Edmonstoune told me t'other day that his cousin Colonel 
George Crawford was no poet, but a great singer of songs ; 
but that his eldest brother Robert (by a former marriage) 
had a great turn that way, having written the words of 
* The bush aboon Traquair' and ' Tweedside.' That the 
Mary to whom it was addressed was Mary Stewart of the 
Castlemilk family, afterwards wife of Mr John Belches. 
The Colonel (Edmonstoune) never saw Robert Crawford, 
though he was at his burial fifty-five years ago. He was a 
pretty young man, and had lived long in France. Lady 
Ankerville is his niece, and may know more of his poetical 
vein. An epitaph-monger like me might moralize upon 
the vanity of life, and the vanity of those sweet effusions." 
(Currie's edition of Burns, vol. ii. pp. 107 and 120.) 

Patrick Crawfurd, third son of David Crawfurd of Drum- 
soy, merchant in Edinburgh, was twice married, first, to a 
daughter of Gordon of Turnberry, by whom he had two 
sons, 1st, Thomas, who was successively Secretary to the 
Embassy of the Earl of Stair, and Envoy Extraordinary to 


the Court of France. He died at Paris, in 1724. 2d, Ro- 
bert, the poet, who died unmarried. His brother's official 
residence at Paris may have been, the occasion of his re- 
maining there till 1732, when he died, or, as reported, was 
drowned, on his return to his native country. His father, 
Patrick, was married, secondly, to Jean, daughter of Ar- 
chibald Crawfurd of Auchinames, by whom he had a large 
family ; Colonel George Crawfurd, mentioned by Ramsay 
of Ochtertyre, was the second son by this marriage. He 
was Lieutenant-Colonel of the 53d regiment, and died in 
1758. It is plainly, therefore, a mistake to designate 
the Poet, ' of Auchinames.' According to the informa- 
tion of old Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee to Burns, Robert 
Crawfurd was drowned in returning from France, in 1732 ; 
if so, his body may have been brought to Scotland for 

In this Note, Mr Stenhouse refers to a portrait of Mary 
Scott, " the Flower of Yarrow," as painted for the Duke 
of Hamilton. Pennant, in describing the pictures at Ha- 
milton, is quite animated when he comes to speak of this 
portrait painted by Ramsay : — " Irresistless beauty " (he 
says) " brings up the rear, in form of Miss Mary Scott, 
a full length, in white satin ; a most elegant figure : and 
thus concludes the list with what is more powerful than all 
that has preceded ; than the arms of the warrior, the art of 
the politician, the admonitions of the churchman, or the 
wisdom of the philosopher." (Tour in Scotland, vol. ii. p. 
125.) Another picture of " the Flower of Yarrow," also 
by Ramsay, if I remember right, is in the Marquis of Bute's 
possession, at Mount Stuart. 

Mary's dream. 
" It is quite evident that this Dream, in its first Scot- 
ish dress, is a forgery, proceeding from the same sources 

116 • Mary's dream. 

whence many of Cromek's ballads were derived. One of 
the lines is too long — 

Pale — bending on her his hollow ee. " — (C. K. S.) 
Although never acknowledged, I have no doubt that 
Allan Cunningham was the author of this version of ' Mary's 
Dream' — a circumstance that cannot be excused, merely 
as a pretended original old ballad, since it affected Lowe's 
reputation as a poet, by taking away the originality of 
the poem to which alone he owes any celebrity ; but I am 
sure, my excellent friend has long since repented ever 
having made any such attempt. In Cromek's Remains of 
Nithsdale and Galloway Song, where this version first 
appeared, there is an interesting account given of Lowe, 
communicated by the Rev. Mr Gillespie. Dr Thomas 
Murray, in his Literary History of Galloway, has also a 
minute biography of Lowe. Mr Cunningham, however, 
in his edition of Burns (vol. viii. p. 35), reprobates, in 
strong terms, Lowe's conduct to the Lady, to whom he 
addressed his * Mary's Dream.' 


John Mayne, the author of " The Siller Gun," and 
other poems, was a native of Dumfries. He was long 
connected with the London newspaper press, and died at 
an advanced age, 14th of March 1836. " A better or 
warmer-hearted man" (says Allan Cunningham) "never 
existed." See an account of his life in the Gentleman's 
Magazine, May 1836, and in The Annual Obituary for 


there's nae luck about the house. 
" It was from my notes that Mr S. took the traditional 
account of Colin's fate. As to the contest about the au- 
thorship of this song, it is very improbable that Mickle, 
who had a musical ear in poetry, could ever have made 

there's nae luck about the house. * 117 

speak rhyme to greet — a defect which greatly spoils the 
effect of these charming verses." — (C. K. S.) 

" The authorship of this song" (says the late Mr Mother- \ 
well) " has been disputed, some ascribing it to Mrs Jean I 
Adams, and others to William Julius Mickle. I am not ' 
convinced yet that Mickle was its author ; on the con- ? 
trary, I think that the evidence contained in the Appendix \ 
to Cromek's Scotish Songs, completely outweighs the cir- I 
cumstances on which it has been assigned to Mickle. We | 
may farther add, that the measure and rhythm of many of 
Jean Adams' other poems, which are all of a religious and 
moral cast, are so like that of this song, as forcibly to recall 
it to recollection, while nothing written by Mickle has the 
remotest resemblance to it." — (Edit, of Burns,vol.v.p.308.) 

I shall not presume to offer any decided opinion on this 
disputed point ; and shall only observe that the evidence 
in favour of Jean Adams contained in Mrs Fullerton's 
letter, published by Cromek, is that of a lady whose 
family were her chief patrons ; and that we know nothing 
of her compositions during the last twenty years of her life, 
and therefore it would be unfair to judge her solely by an 
examination of verses which she composed in her younger 
days, in the style of " the best English poets that have 
written within seventy years." Had Mickle himself in- 
cluded the song in the collection of his Poems, or left any 
written evidence claiming it as his own composition, no 
doubt on the subject would have remained; but the manu- 
script copy found among his papers, is such as a person 
might have written after having heard it sung. 

A parody on this song, on the conclusion of Peace with 
America, appeared in 1782, and was printed in the common 
stall-form. It begins thus — 

But are you sure the news is true ? I 
And is it really fact ? | 

Have Conway, Burke and Fox at last 1 
Laid North upon hia back ? | 

118 * there's nae luck about the house. 

^ ^ Chorus. 

There's nae luck about the Court, 

There's nae luck at a' ; 
There can be nane while we're at war 

Wi' North America. 

It is a very poor performance, and only worthy of notice 

to show the popularity of the original song. See also Song 

Dxcv, in the 6th vol. of the Musical Museum, for 

There's nae luck about the house. 
When our gudewife's awa'. 

What is designated " the Gallo vidian " way of the old 
Scotish song, ' There s nae luck about the house,' a version 
evidently by the author of the work, will be found at page 
244 of that most strange production called " The Scottish 
Gallovidian Encyclopedia, by John Mactaggart." Lon- 
don, 1824, 8vo. 

The fullest account of Jean Adams, who died in the 
Town's Hospital at Glasgow, 9th of April, 1765, is given 
by Cromek, in the Appendix to his ' Select Scotish Songs,' 
vol. i. p. 189. The volume of her Poems was published 
by subscription, and is dedicated by her " To Thomas 
Crauford of Craufordsburn, Esq." 

The volume bears this title — " Miscellany Poems, by 
Mrs Jane Adams, in Crawfordsdyke. Glasgow, printed by 
James Duncan in the Salt-market, near Gibson's Wynd, 
1734," 8vo, The Address to the Reader, signed Archi- 
bald Crauford, states that " The Author of the follow- 
ing Miscellany Poems is a young woman, born in the 
town of Craufordsdyke, in the parish of Greenoak, and 
shire of Renfrew, in the West of Scotland : her father was 
a shipmaster in that place : her breeding was as is ordinary 
for girls of her station and circumstances ; and having 
several years ago lost her father. Providence ordered her 
lot for some years in the family of a reverend Minister in 
the neighbourhood, where she had access to peruse such of 
that Minister's books as her fancy led her to read." 

Mrs Jean Adams was not very successful in her imita- 

there's nae luck about the house, * 119 

tions of the style either of Milton or Cowley, and she was 
rather fond of displaying her learning. In an address " To 
the Phoenix," she speaks of thousands having beheld that 
fabulous bird on Mount Helicon, and boasts, 

Nay, I my self have seen thee there. 
But never any other where, 
Except at Pindar's Well. 

The following poem, although the latter part, containing 
the reply of the Goddess of Justice, approaches to bombast, 
may be relished by Album writers of the present age. 


AsTKEA, why so pale and sad ? 

Why so plainly drest ? 
Why upon the jovial plain 

Shunned by all the rest ? 

For a garland of fresh flowers. 

Why a pair of Scales ? 
Thou art not yet above the sky 

Where Equity prevails. 

Put that rigid aspect off. 

Suit thee to the time. 
All the Constellations here 

Are valued as they shine. 

Rather let me, Phoenix-like, 

Live on Earth alone ; ' 
Till by Nature's course I fly 

To meet that glorious Sun. 

Whose radiant beams will touch my wings 

With pure celestial fire ; 
Which shall to endless ages burn. 

Yet never shall aspire. 

Lament thou not, because thine eyes 

Shall see no Son of mine ; 
I'll flourish thro' Eternity, 

Like Jove in spight of time. 

120 * there's nae luck about the house. 

The volume concludes with the following singular 
lines : — 


Come hither to the Hedge, and see 
The walks that are assign'd to thee : 
All the bounds of Virtue shine. 
All the plain of Wisdom's thine. 
All the flowers of harmless Wit 
Thou mayest pull, if thou think'st fit. 
In the fair field of History ; 
All the plants of Piety 
Thou mayest freely thence transplant : 
But have a care of whining Cant. 


" I POSSESS a MS. copy of this excellent ballad, subjoin- 
ed to an early transcript of Dryden's Absalom and Achito- 
phel, which contains, what seems to me, an improvement 
on the printed editions. In these, Willy enumerating the 
dignities of his father, mentions — 

A gude blue bonnet on his head. 
An ourlay on his craigie ; 
And aye, untill the day he died. 
He rode on gude shank's nagie. 

Riding on shank's nagie means walking on foot, which is 
no peculiar distinction ; but in my MS. the line stands — 
He rode an ambling nagie j 

which certainly coincides much better with the rest of the 
description." — (C. K. S.) 

" The first line of this song is quoted by Shakspeare, in 
King Lear."_(C. K. S.) 

" There is a tradition in Fife, that Jenny hanged herself 


for love, and her grave is still pointed out. The following 
notice respecting some relics discovered there was kindly- 
communicated to me by Mr Fraser, jeweller, St Andrew's 
Street, Edinburgh, in whose possession they now remain : 
— ' Gold ear-ring and bead of a necklace which belonged 
to the famed Jenny Nettles of Scotish song, whom tradi- 
tion mentions committed suicide, and was buried between 
two lairds' lands near the Lomond hills, a cairn or heap of 
stones being raised to mark the spot, according to ancient 
usage. A stranger, happening to visit a farmer in that 
neighbourhood, was accidentally informed of the above cir- 
cumstance, and was shown the place where the cairn once 
stood. Prompted by the love of antiquarian research, he 
immediately commenced digging, when, at the depth of 
eighteen inches, he found the skull and other bones of poor 
Jenny (which must have remained inhumed at least a cen- 
tury), along with two ear-rings and twenty-four beads- 
One of the ear-rings was given to a gentleman who went 
to France, and twenty-three of the beads were distributed 
amongst various persons. 1830.'" — (C. K. S.) 

This humorous song was formerly supposed to have been 
written by Francis Semple of Beltrees : it has been claimed, 
upon apparently better grounds, as the composition of Sir 
William Scott of Thirlestane, in Selkirkshire, ancestor 
of the present Lord Napier. " There is a tradition in the 
family of Lord Napier, tiiat this ballad was composed by 
William Scott, Esq., younger of Thirlestane, who married 
Elizabeth, Mistress of Napier. Their marriage-contract is 
dated 15th Dec. 1699."— (C. K. S.) 

The family tradition is minutely detailed by Mr Mai-k 
Napier, in his " History of the Partition of the Lennox," 
p. 237-239. Edinb. 1835. 8vo. He there quotes a letter 
to himself from the late Lord Napier, dated Thirlestane, 


15th December, 1831, as follows : — " Sir William Scott 
was author of that well-known Scots song, ' Fye^ let us a' 
to the bridal — -for there will be liltings there' — a better thing 
than Horace ever wrote. My authority was my father, 
who told me he had from his, and that he had it from his, 
who was Sir William's son." Sir William Scott died on 
the 8th of October, 1725. A collection of his Latin Poems 
was printed in a volume, entitled " Selecta Poemata 
Archibaldi Pitcarnii Med. Doctoris, Gul. Scot a Thirle- 
stane Equitis, Thomae Kincadii, et aliorum." Edinb. 
1727. 12mo. Mr Napier, in mentioning this volume, says 
that Sir William " is therein eulogized by the editor, Dr 
Pitcairne," the learned gentleman forgetting that Dr Pit- 
cairne died in 1713, and that he is the first person who " is 
therein eulogized by the editor " in the address, by the 
printer, " Robertus Fribarnius Lectori (piT^oixaaca S.," which 
was probably written by Thomas Ruddiman the gram- 


I CANNOT ascertain where the different sets of these 
beautiful lyrics were first published. It is also somewhat 
doubtful which of them should claim priority of composi- 
tion. A few particulars, however, respecting the ladies by 
whom they were written will not be here misplaced. 

1. Mrs Cockburn was a daughter of Robert Rutherford 
of Fernylee, in the county of Selkirk, and born probably 
about the year 1710 or 1712. In 1731 she married Patrick 
Cockburn, youngest son of Adam Cockburn of Ormiston, 
Lord Justice- Clerk, who died 16th of April, 1735, in the 
79th year of his age. Patrick was admitted advocate, 27th 
of January, 1728; but died, " after a tedious illness," at 
Musselburgh, 29th of April, 1753. Her pathetic verses, 
^ I've seen the smiling of fortune beguiling^' are printed in 


" The Lark," p. 37, Edinburgh, 1765, with some occasional 
variations. She survived her husband for more than forty 
years. From family intimacy, this lady was well known 
to Sir Walter Scott in his youth, and on several occasions 
he has mentioned her in terras of great regard. " Even 
at an age " (he says) " advanced beyond the usual bounds 
of humanity, she retained a play of imagination, and an 
activity of intellect, which must have been attractive and 
delightful in youth, but were almost preternatural at her 
period of life. Her active benevolence, keeping pace with 
her genius, rendered her equally an object of love and 
admiration. The Editor, who knew her well, takes this 
opportunity of doing justice to his own feelings ; and they 
are in unison with those of all who knew his regretted 
friend." (Border Minstrelsy, vol. iii. p.. 338, edit. 1833.) 
See also Lockhart's Life of Scott, vol. i. pp. 9, 86, 88, 
97, 122; and vol. ii. p. 358. 

Sir Walter Scott communicated at considerable length 
to Mr Robert Chambers, when publishing his " Scottish 
Songs," in 1829, his personal recollections of Mrs Cock- 
burn ; and these, as possessed of more than common inter- 
est, are here copied from the preface to that collection. 

" Mrs Catherine Cockburn, authoress of those verses 
to the tune of the Flowers of the Forest, which begin, 
I've seen the smiling of fortune beguiling, 

was daughter to Rutherford, Esq. of Fairnalee, in 

Selkirkshire. A turret in the old house of Fairnalee is 
still shown as the place where the poem was written. The 
occasion was b. calamitous period in Selkirkshire, or Ettrick 
Forest, when no fewer than seven lairds or proprietors, 
men of ancient family and inheritance, having been engaged 
in some imprudent speculations, became insolvent in one 

" Miss C. Rutherford was married to Cockburn, 

son of Cockburn of Ormiston, Lord Justice- Clerk of Scot- 


land. Mr Cockburn acted as Commissioner for the Duke 
of Hamilton of that day ; and being, as might be expected 
from his family, a sincere friend to the Revolution and 
Protestant succession, he used his interest with his principal 
to prevent him from joining in the intrigues which preceded 
the insurrection of 1745, to which his Grace is supposed to 
have had a strong inclination. 

" Mrs Cockburn was herself a keen Whig. I remember 
having heard repeated a parody on Prince Charles's pro- 
clamation, in burlesque verse, to the tune of ' Clout the 
Caldron.' In the midst of the siege or blockade of the 
Castle of Edinburgh, the carriage in which Mrs Cockburn 
was returning from a Adsit to Ravelstone, was stopped by 
the Highland guard at the West Port ; and, as she had a 
copy of the parody about her person, she was not a little 
alarmed at the consequences ; especially as the officer talked 
of searching the carriage for letters and correspondence 
with the Whigs in the city. Fortunately, the arms on the 
coach were recognised as belonging to a gentleman favour- 
able to the cause of the Adventurer, so that Mrs Cockburn 
escaped, with the caution not to carry political squibs about 
her person in future. 

" Apparently, she was fond of parody ; as I have heard 
a very clever one of her writing, upon the old song, 
' Nancy's to the greenwood gane.' The occasion of her 
writing it, was the rejection of her brother's hand by a 
fantastic young lady of fasliion. The first verse ran 

thus : — 

Nancy's to the Assembly gane. 

To hear the fops a' chattering ; 
And Willie he has followed her. 

To win her love by flattering. 

*' I farther remember only the last verse, which describes 
the sort of exquisite then in fashion : — 

Wad ye hae bonny Nancy ? 
Na, I'll hae ane has learned to fence,. 


And that can please my fancy ; 
Ane that can flatter, bow, and dance. 

And make love to the ladies. 
That kens how folk behave in France, 

And's bauld amang the cadies. * 

" Mrs Cockburn was authoress of many other little 
pieces, particularly a set of toasts descriptive of some of 
her friends, and sent to a company where most of them 
were assembled. They were so accurately drawn, that 
each was at once referred to the person characterised. 
One runs thus : — 

To a thing that's uncommon — a youth of discretion, 

Who, though vastly handsome, despises flirtation ; 

Is the friend in affliction, the soul of affection. 

Who may hear the last trump without dread of detection. 

This was written for my father, then a young and remark- 
ably handsome man. 

" The intimacy was great between my mother and Mrs 
Cockburn. She resided in Crichton Street, and, my 
father's house being in George's Square, the intercourse of 
that day, which was of a very close and unceremonious 
character, was constantly maintained with little trouble. 
My mother and Mrs Cockburn were related, in what 
degree I know not, but sufficiently near to induce Mrs 
Cockburn to distinguish her in her will. Mrs Cockburn 
had the misfortune to lose an only son, Patrick Cockburn, 
who had the rank of Captain in the Dragoons, several 
years before her own death; which last event took place 
about forty years since. 

" Mrs Cockburn was one of those persons whose talents 
for conversation made a stronger impression on her con- 
temporaries, than her writings can be expected to produce. 
In person and features she somewhat resembled Queen 
Elizabeth ; but the nose was rather more aquiline. She 

* An old-fashioned species of serviceable attendants, between the 
•street-porter and the valet- de- place, peculiar to Edinburgh. A great 
number were always hanging about the doors of the Assembly Rooms- 


was proud of hei- auburn hair, which remained unbleached 
by time, even when she was upwards of eighty years old. 
She maintained the rank in the society of Edinburgh, which 
French women of talents usually do in that of Paris ; and 
her little parlour used to assemble a very distinguished and 
accomplished circle, among whom David Hume, John 
Home, Lord Monboddo, and many other men of name, 
were frequently to be found. Her evening parties were 
A^ery frequent, and included society distinguished both for 
condition and talents. The petit souper which always con- 
cluded the evening, was like that of Stella, which she used 
to quote on the occasion : — 

A supper like her mighty self. 

Four nothings on four plates of delf. 

But they passed off more gaily than many costlier enter- 

" She spoke both wittily and well, and maintained an 
extensive correspondence, which, if it continues to exist, 
must contain many things highly curious and interesting. 
My recollection is, that her conversation brought her much 
nearer to a Frenchwoman than to a native of England ; 
and, as I have the same impression with respect to ladies of 
the same period and the same rank in society, I am apt to 
think that the vieille cour of Edinburgh rather resembled 
that of Paris than that of St James's ; and particularly, 
that the Scotch imitated the Parisians in laying aside much 
of the expense and form of those little parties in which wit 
and good-humour were allowed to supersede all occasion of 
display. The lodging where Mrs Cockburn received the 
best society of her time, would not now offer accommoda- 
tion to a very inferior person." — (Sir Walter Scott.) 

As a farther specimen of Mrs Cockburn's talent for me- 
trical composition, the two following songs have been com- 
municated by Mr Kirkpatrick Sharpe, who has added 
marginal notes explaining the allusions to the persons de- 


* 127 


On the back of a Picture of Sir Hew Dalrijmple. 

To the tune of " All you Ladiea now at Land." 


Look behind, and you shall see 

A portrait just and true ; 
Here's of mankind th' epitome, 

Form'd in our right Sir Hew- pie.'ilJ'rbaS'of 

Sprightly, witty, gay, and glad ; fn"pornr;.^t 'as mV.'! 

Thoughtful, serious, sour, and sad ; ber for Haddington., 

^ . , . o- TT -N eliire, and died at Lon- 

Pray, is not this Sir Hew ? don, i7<;o. 

Ever varying, yet the same. 
We find our friend Sir Hew ; 

Fond of public life and fame. 
And of the private too — 

Though public life is his desire. 

He warms his shins at his own fire. 
Who is not like Sir Hew ? 


Once an amorous swain. Sir Hew, 
As e'er pip'd on the plain ; 

As witness Helen Cantilew, 
Of sixty years and twain — 

But now, on soul of woman bent. 

Pie scorns her earthly tenement — 
Woe's me for poor Sir Hew I 

This stanza al'nies 
to Iiis having decla- 
red to the lady that 
he oJice a4iiiirod her 
person, but now only 
her good uuderstand- 
iiig and mental accom^ 

Humane and generous drops the tear. 

Most genuine and true. 
For woes that others feel and bear. 

From gentle, kind Sir Hew : 
Though out of sight is out of mind ; 
Yet see him, and he's always kind. 

Our worthy friend. Sir Hew. 


To all below him mild and just. 
And to his friendships true — 

Forsakes no friend — betrays no trust- 
Adore him in this view ! — 

Yet fog or rain will cramp his heart ; 

One hour he'll act a different part— > 
Who is not like Sir Hew ? 



Nature cried (who form'd this man 

A little odd and new), 
" Try, Art, to spoil him, if you can. 

For I have made Sir Hew." 
Art, fond of spoiling Nature's trade. 
Said, " Let him be a member made. 

Then know vour own Sir Hew." 

For twenty years she tries her tricks. 
And sends him to the senate ; 

Shows factions, parties, politics. 
And yet — the devil's in it — 

The man grows very little worse ; 

His heart is sounder than his purse. 
Pray, sirs, is this not true ? 

This allusion might 
fix the date of the song- 
to the year 1761, as Sir 
Hew was first returned 
to Parliament in 1741. 


To the tune of " All ye Ladies now at Land. " 


All health be round Balcarras' board. 
May mirth and joy still flow ; 

And may my Lady and my Lord 
Ne'er taste of future wo ! 

Come fill a bumper to the brim. 

And here's to her, and here's to him. 
Fal, lal, &c. 

James, fifth Earl 
of Balcarras, married 
Anne, daughter of Sir 
Robert Dalrymple of 
Castleton, Ktl, son of 
Sir Hew Dalrymple, of 
North Berwick, Bart. 

For here, by brandy vine inspir'd. 

The frolic took its birth. 
While Horn, and Soph, and all conspir'd 

To spread around the mirth. 
St Andrews still remember'd be 
For mirth, and joy, and loyalty. 

Fa, la, &c. 

To the jolly Colonel and his spouse. 
Pray see a health go round ; 

For such a pair in any house 
Is seldom to be found. 

And here's to charming Elphinstone, 

May she soon of two make one ! 
Fa, la, &c. 

Robert Dalrymple 
Horn Elphinstone, af» 
terwards a g-eneral in 
the army. He married 
Mary, daughter of Sir 
John ElphinstO[ie of 
Logic, and died 1794. 

Miss Peggy Elphin" 
stone. Colonel Horn's 



To Guadaloupe's fair governess 
We next due honovirs pay. 

And to the lad that she likes best, 
Though he be far away — 

Fly, gentle Peace, -with downy wing. 

And to her arms her soldier bring. 
Fa, la, &c. 


Come crown the goblet once again, 

And see it quickly done. 
A cup of thanks we owe, that's plain. 

To Neptune's gallant son : 
O all the powers of mirth forbid. 
That we forget our noble Kyde. 

Fa, la, &c. 

Mra Campbell Dal- 
rymple, daughter of Mr 
Douglas of St Christo- 
pher's, and wife of Colo- 
nel Campbell Dalrym- 
pie, Governor of Guada- 
loupe. After her first 
husband's death, she 
married Elizabeth Lady 
Balcarras's father, Chas. 
Dalrymple of North 

Captain Kydo. 

Now, lovely nymphs, and loving swains. 

Across pray join your hands. 
We mean to pay you for your pains. 

For this our song commands — 
To laugh, and love, and live in bliss — 
Behold, how good a thing it is ■ - 

For neighbours thus to love and kiss. 

Fa, la, &c. 

Verse added b^ Miss Anne Keith. 
Come, to our laureat fill again. 

For sure it's good our part ; 
And let dear Cockburn's friendly name 

Inspire each grateful heart. 
Go, Chorus, with our loud huzzas. 
To tell her of her song's applause. 

Fa, la, &c. 

It will be remarked that Sir Walter Scott has styled 
Mrs Cockburn, Miss Catherine Rutherford and Mrs 
Catherine Cockburn. From the following entry of her 
marriage in the Parish Registers of Ormiston, it is certain 
that Sir Walter was mistaken : — 

"12th March, 1731, Mr Patrick Cockburn, Advocate, 



in this Parish, and Mrs Alison Rutherford, in the Parish 
of Galashiels, were contracted in order to marriage, and 
after due proclamation were married." 

There was a Mrs Catherine Cockburn (the daughter of 
Captain David Trotter), who, at an earlier period, wrote 
several plays and philosophical works, which were much 
admired. Mr Burnet of Kemnay, in 1704, in writing to 
the Princess Sophia, drew Mrs Trotter's character in such 
advantageous terms, that her Royal Highness replied, 
" Je suis charmee du portrait avantageux, que vous me 
faites de la nouvelle Sappho Ecossoise, qui semble meriter 
les eloges que vous luy donnez." She died in May 1749, 
aged 71 ; and possibly the similarity of name may have 
misled Sir Walter Scott's recollections. A collection of 
" The Works of Mrs Catherine Cockburn, Theological, 
Moral, Dramatic, and Poetical," with her Life by Dr 
Birch, was published at London in 1751, 2 vols. 8vo. 

Mrs Alison Cockburn died at Edinburgh on the 24 th of 
November, 1794. 

2. Miss Jane Elliot was the second daughter of Sir 
Gilbert Elliot of Minto, Bart., one of the Lords of Session, 
and Lord Justice-Clerk (who died 16th of April, 1766, 
aged 73), and Helen Stuart, daughter of Sir Robert Stuart 
of Allanbank. She was born in the year 1727. Her song, 
' The Flowers of the Forest,' is said to have been written 
about the year 1 755 ; and when first published it passed as 
an old ballad. In Herd's Collection of Scotish Songrs and 
Ballads, 1776, and in other copies, both Miss Elliot's and) ^J 
Mrs Cockburn's stanzas are incorporated as part of a long (^$(- 
narrative ballad, which begins. 

From Spey to the Border was peace and good order. 
The sway of our Monarch was mild as the May ; 
Peace he adored, which Soudrons abhorred. 
Our Marches they plunder, our Wardens they slay. 

These stanzas are altogether inferior, and of a modern 


cast ; and it may safely be alleged that neither Miss 
Elliot or Mrs Cockburn had any concern in writing them. 
Miss Elliot's elegy long remained anonymous. Sir Walter 
Scott, in printing it, in the Border Minstrelsy, 1803, 
says, " The following well-known and beautiful stanzas 
were composed, many years ago, by a lady of family in 
Roxburghshire. The manner of the ancient Minstrels is 
so happily imitated, that it required the most positive evi- 
dence to convince the Editor that the song was of modern 

For the following character of this lady, I am indebted 
to a gentleman who was acquainted with her during the 
latter period of her life : — 

" Miss Elliot had a sensible face, and a slender, well- 
shaped figure. Her manner was grave and reserved to 
strangers : — in her conversation she made no attempts at 
wit ; and though possessed of imagination, she never allow- 
ed it to entice her from the strictest rules of veracity — a 
virtue not very common either in poets or poetesses. She 
had high aristocratic notions, which she took no pains to 

" In her early youth her father employed her to read his 
law-papers to him, and declared that he profited by the 
shrewdness of her remarks. I was told by a lady very 
intimate with her, that she composed ' The Flowers of the 
Forest ' in a carriage with her brother Sir Gilbert, after a 
conversation about the battle of Flodden, and a bet that 
she could not make a ballad on that subject. She had 
read a great deal, and possessed an excellent memory, both 
as to books and what had come under her own observation 
during life. She was very fond of French literature ; but 
detested the modern political principles of that ungovern- 
able nation. 

"She was the only lady I remember in Edinburgh who 
kept her own sedan-chair. It always stood in the lobby 


of her house in Brown's Square. This house has lately- 
been demolished, during the ruinous rage of our city 

" Though a literary character, which, in the female sex, 
is sometimes productive of slovenliness as to dress, she was 
remarkably nice in that particular ; neither did she affect 
the costumes of her youth, which, at that time, made many 
old ladies appear extremely ridiculous. There was that 
good sense in every thing she said and did, which rendered 
her universally respected by all who had the pleasure of her 

In the Statistical Account of the Parish of Minto, just 
published, it is stated, respecting Miss Elliot, that " This 
lady appears to have been no less remarkable for strength 
of character than accomplishment; for, at the time of the 
Rebellion 1745-46, her father being forced to conceal him- 
self from a party of Jacobites among the craigs, then only 
covered with broom and long grass, she received and enter- 
tained the officers, and, by her presence of mind and com- 
posure, averted the danger." 

There is not perhaps, in the whole range of our lyric 
poetry, a finer adaptation of old words handed down by 
tradition, than Miss Elliot's ' Flowers of the Forest,' — 
and her verses compose a dirge or elegy " expressed in a 
strain of elegiac simplicity and tenderness, which has seldom 
been equalled." It is to be regretted that this song should 
remain a solitary memorial of her genius ; but I cannot 
learn that any other verses by Miss Elliot have ever been 

For many years, at least from 1782 to 1804, Miss Elliot 
resided in Brown's Square, Edinburgh ; but she died at 
her brother. Admiral Elliot's seat, at Mount Teviot, Rox- 
burghshire, on the 29th of March, 1805. 

3. Miss Anne Home, to whom the verses in the 
Museum, beginning, ' Adieu, ye streams that smoothly glide,' 


are assigned, was the eldest daughter of Robert Home of 
Greenlaw, in Berwickshire, surgeon of Burgoyne's regiment 
of Light Horse. She was born in the year 1742, and 
was married to John Hunter, the distinguished anatomist, 
in July 1771. The above verses, adapted to the tune of 
' The Flowers of the Forest,' but having no reference to 
that calamitous event, occur in " The Lark," Edinburgh, 
1765. A volume of " Poems by Mrs John Hunter" was 
printed at London,' 1802, 8vo, with a dedication to her 
son, John Banks Hunter, Esq. The verses printed in the 
Musical Museum are not contained in that volume, but 
there is no reason to suppose that they have been erro- 
neously ascribed to her pen. Her poems were formerly 
much admired, and display both feeling and imagination. 
She died at London, 7th of January, 1821, in the 79th 
year of her age. She was the sister of the late Sir Everard 


" The song of ' Ah ! Chloris, could I now but sit,' is 
to be found in Sir Charles Sedley's play of the Mulberry 
Garden ; ergo, this tender tale of the President Forbes and 

Miss Rose goes for nothing In the Museum, the song is 

ascribed to Sir Alexander Halket of Pitferran. A lady, 
a connexion of his, and a near relation of mine, told me 
that Sir A. wrote these verses on his wife, at whose baptism 
he had been present." — (C. K. S.) Sedley's play was acted 
in 1668, and printed in 1675, being several years before 
President Forbes was born ; and there is no doubt that 
Sedley wrote the song in question. 

In the Museum, one or two other songs (see pp. 34 and 111) 
are ascribed to the Lord President Forbes, on rather 
slender authority. His character is sufficient, however, to 
be independent of any questionable aid ; for although his 
claims to be reckoned among our lyric poets should not be 

134 * GILDEROY, 

established, I am not sure that he would be the less respected 
and venerated by his countrymen. We know, at least, 
that he was a sincere friend of Allan Ramsay, Thomson, 
and other poets ; and that he himself occasionally woo'd the 
Muses, I have a proof in his own handwriting, being an 
Epithalamium, extending to upwards of 230 lines. It is 
probably a juvenile performance, and begins 

No wonder that AppoUo left 
Parnassus shady watry cleft. 
To honour the propitious day 
That blest young Strephon with the lovely Gray : 

Strephon had often tuned his lyre, 
- And even lent his Godhead fire ; 
Strephon had taught his fingers how to move. 
And strung his vocall harp for speaking love. 

At the top of the second column, he has written the follow- 
ing lines — 

Colin, you see my pipe can only squeak. 
The stops unequal are, the voice is weak. 
My thumbs unus'd to dance upon the reed. 
And I stranger to the learned lead ; 
However, since I play, you weel may thol 
To hear, your humble servant, Hobinol. 

The occasion which called forth this poem, in all proba- 
bility, is that alluded to in the following note : — 

" President Forbes's first cousin, Mr Forbes, mar- 
ried Miss Aikman, whose mother was Miss Mary Gray, of 
Lord Gray's family." — (C. K. S.) 


BuRNs's description of the author of this song is too 
graphic to be omitted. — " The two first lines of this song are 
all that is old. The rest of the song, as well as those songs 
in the Museum marked T, are the works of an obscure, 
tippling, but extraordinary body of the name of Tytler, 


commonly known by the name of Balloon Tytler, from his 
having projected a balloon : A mortal, who though he 
drudges about Edinburgh as a common printer, with leaky 
shoes, a skylighted hat, and knee-buckles as unlike as 
* George-by-the-grace-of-God,' and ' Solomon-the-son-of- 
David ;' yet that same unknown drunken mortal is author 
and compiler of three-fourths of Elliot's pompous Encyclo- 
pedia Britannica, which he composed at half-a-guinea a- 
week." (Reliques, p. 224.) 


" The following verses to this air were taken from a 
MS. collection of poems ; and are curious enough, not only 
from their bombast, but as celebrating the woes of a lady, 
afterwards the notorious Lady Vane." — (C. K. S.) 


His Lady's Lament, to the tune of The Broom of Cowdenhioios hij 

Lieutenant William Hamilton, vulgo Wanton Willie. 

Since cruel-hearted fate has rob'd me of my mate 

In the sweet flowing bloom of his years. 
Like a turtle I will moan for my jewel that is gone. 

And drown in a deluge of tears. 

Unto some silent shade, in sable weed arrayd. 

Through the desarts I'll wander and go. 
Where the heavy sighs I send to the heavens shall ascend 

In the clouds of my anguish and woe. 

My penetrating cryes shall rend the very skyes. 

The earth with convulsions shall reel. 
While the adamantick stones, sympatMzing with my groans,. 

Their grief all in tears do reveal. 

But lest I should offend, my humble knees I'll bend, 

And with sweetest composure of mind, 
I'll unto every bitt of Providence submitt. 

For a patren to ladys behind. 

Then with courage bold of mind my darline I'll resign. 

And finish my funeral moan ; 
He's the debt that I must pay to the powers above, for why ?. 

I had him from them but in loan. 


Now though he's from me snatchtj whom Death hath ovennatcht. 

And pluckt from my bosom so soon. 
Yet methinks I hear him say, blest angels pav'd his way. 

From the evils of life to a crown. 

For some notice of the writer of these verses, see the 
additional note to song cxxxvii. 



Miss Anne Keith was the same lady as Mrs Murray 
Keith, an old friend of Sir Walter Scott's, whom he has 
so finely portrayed in the character of Mrs Bethune Baliol, 
in the Introduction to the Chronicles of the Canongate. 
She was born in the year 1736, and died in April, 1818. 

" Miss Anne Keith resided many years in Edinburgh 
(51 George Street), keeping house with her elder sister, 
Miss Jenny — both universally beloved and respected ; they 
were the sisters of Sir Robert Murray Keith, commonly 
called Ambassador Keith, from having been employed in 
many diplomatic missions, with the applause of all the 
world. He was particularly celebrated for his colloquial 
talents. Sir Walter Scott told me that Mrs Anne Keith 
amused heiself, in the latter years of her life, by translating 
Macpherson's Ossian into verse. He did not know what 
became of the MS. after her decease. Sir Robert M. 
Keith erected a monument to the memory of the Jacobite 
Marischal Keith, in the Church of Hochkirchen, with an 
Epitaph composed by Metastasio. See Wood's Peerage, 
article Marischal."— (C. K. S.) 

In a letter to Mr Terry, dated Selkirk, 18th of April, 
1818, Sir Walter Scott says, " You will be sorry to hear 
that we have lost our excellent old friend, Mrs Murray 
Keith. She enjoyed all her spirits and excellent faculties 
till within two days of her death, when she was seized with 
a feverish complaint, which eighty-two years were not cal- 
culated to resist. Much tradition, and of the. very best 

O.SCAll's GHOST. * 137 

kind, has died with this excellent old lady ; one of the few 
persons whose spirits and cleanliness, and freshness of mind 
and body, made old age lovely and desirable. In the 
general case it seems scarce endurable." (Lockhart's Life 
of Scott, vol. iv. p. 139.) 

Some account of Sir Robert Murray Keith will be given 
in the additional Note to Song ccxxi. 



The last three stanzas of this song have usually been 
ascribed to Mr Bryce, Minister of Kirknewton. At page 
76 he is erroneously styled Dr Bryce ; and the song is 
stated to have been published by Ramsay in the third 
volume of the Tea- Table Miscellany, which appeared in 
1727, instead of the fourth volume of that popular collec- 
tion, which was not printed for several years later. This 
renders it at least probable that the additional verses were 
written by Bryce ; still it must have been at a very early 
period of life. Mr S.'s concluding remarks on the name 
Invermay and Endermay might have been spared ; for, as 
Mr R. Chambers observes, " Ender is merely a corruption 
of Inver or Inner. The people of Peebles, in my young 
days, always spoke of Henderleithen, not Innerleithen." 

In Chambers's Biogr, Diet. vol. iv. p. 493, there is an 
interesting memoir inserted of Mr Bryce, drawn up from 
family information. It is there stated, that " In early life 
he composed several songs, adapted to some of the most 
favourite Scotish airs; and his stanzas in ' The Birks of 
Invermay' have been long before the world." 

The Rev. Alexander Bryce, Minister of Kirknewton, 
was born at Boarland, in the parish of Kincardine, in the 
year 1713. He was educated at the University of Edin- 
burgh, where he early distinguished himself by his scientific 
acquirements, which attracted the notice and secured the 


patronage of Colin Maclaurin. Upon the recommendation 
of that very distinguished Professor, young Bryce obtained 
the situation of a tutor in a gentleman's family in Caithness, 
which enabled him to employ himself, for a period of three 
years, in constructing a geometrical survey, or " A Map of 
the North Coast of Scotland," which was afterwards en- 
graved, and has been always highly esteemed for accuracy 
by the most competent judges. After his return from the 
North, he was licensed to preach in June 1 744, and was 
ordained minister of Kirknewton in August 1745. He 
died on the 1st of January 1786, in the 72d year of his 
age, and 40 th of his ministry. 

" For about three years before Mr Bryce's death (we 
are told), his greatest amusement was in writing poetry, 
chiefly of a serious and devotional cast ; which, though not 
composed for the public eye, is read with satisfaction by 
his friends, and valued by them as an additional proof of 
his genius ; and a transcript of that enlightened piety, 
uprightness of mind, and unshaken trust in his Creator, 
which characterised him through the whole of his life." 
Some verses by him on the death of Professor Colin 
Maclaurin, in June 1747, were published at the time in 
the Edinburgh newspapers, and are reprinted in Mr 
Chambers's work, vol. iv. p. 495. 

This air, as Mr Stenhouse intimates at p. 82, is old ; 
and was long " used as a reel as well as a song." In proof 
of this, it may be mentioned that " A Dance, Green grows 
the Rashes," has been preserved in Gordon of Straloch's 
MS. Lute-book, written in the year 1627. Having ob- 
tained from James Chalmers, Esq., London, the use of that 
very curious and interesting volume, I am enabled, through 
the kindness of George Farquhar Graham, Esq., to give 
the air from that MS., rendered into modern notation. 










-P- -m- -P- ^ 


The following air occurs in the same MS., and it will at 
once be perceived that it bears a close resemblance to the 
preceding ; the notation of which in Gordon's MS. is 
extremely confused. " These airs, however," as Mr 
Graham remarks, " are very curious as mere skeletons of 
the modern air, known under the name of ' Green grow the 
Rashes.' In Gordon's MS. it is entitled, 


— -# -T-|» 




■p- . -^^ 




The MS. from which these tunes arc given, is a small 



oblong 8vo, and has the following title : — " An Playing 
BooKE FOR THE LvTE, wherin ar contained many Currents 
and other musical things. Muslca mentis medicina mcestce. 
At Aberdein, Notted and collected by Robert Gordon. 
In the yeere of our Lord 1627. In februaree." — At the 
end is this colophon, " Finis huic libro impositus Anno 
D. 1629, Ad finem Decemb. In Straloch." 


J- ^ ift LOW DOWN l' THE BROOM. 

This Song was printed in ' The Lark,' at Edinburgh, 
in 1765 ; and in a stall-copy of that time, it is connected 
with other verses, apparently by a diiferent hand. Mr 
Struthers, in the " Harp of Caledonia," vol. ii. p. 387, has 
assigned this song to " James Carnegie, Esq. of Balna- 
moon, a beautiful estate upon the slope of the Grampians, 
about five miles north-west of Brechin." This, of course, 
refers to ' the auld laird' of Balnamoon. See also Cun- 
ningham's Songs of Scotland, vol. ii. p. 273. 


MY APRON, dearie. 

The author of the well-known pastoral song, " My 
sheep I neglected," was Sir Gilbert Elliot, third 
Baronet of Minto, and brother of Miss Jane Elliot, men- 
tioned above. At page 66, he is erroneously described as 
one of the Senators of the College of Justice. Some notice 
ot him will be given in the additional Note to Song ccvi. 

Mr Stenhouse has omitted to mention, that Sir Gilbert's 
song was printed in the first volume of the collection which 
he quotes under the publisher's name as " Yair's Charmer." 
The title of the work is " The Charmer : a choice collec- 
tion of Songs, Scots and English. Edinburgh, printed for 
J. Yair, bookseller in the Parliament Close," 1749 and 
1751, 2 vols. 12mo. There is a second edition of Vol. I. 


in 1752, which contains several new songs, and an Ad- 
vertisement by the Editor, " J. G." 

There is a later edition of " The Charmer," published 
at Edinburgh, by James Sibbald, in 1782, 2 vols. 12mo. 
Vol. I. is called " The fourth Edition with improvements." 
It is, in fact, the sheets of the edition 1752, with a new title, 
and a few leaves reprinted to supply the place of some cor- 
responding pages which appear to have been cancelled (pp. 
337-346, and 361, &c.) Vol. II., however, as it professes, 
is " An Entire new Collection ;" and the songs are classed, 
under four divisions. The editor of this volume, I should 
suppose, was Sibbald, whose name is best known by his 
" Chronicle of Scottish Poetry," Edinb. 1803, 4 vols. 8vo. 
He died a short time before its publication, in May 1803. 



" I REMEMBER in my youth being told by a lady the 
origin of this song — I have forgot the heroine's name — but 
she was only a Baronet's daughter. Besides making her 
" muck the byre," her husband used to beat her every now 
and then ; a meet return for her folly." — (C. K. S.) 



The remark of Burns, to which an allusion is m^-de at 
page 101, is as follows : — " There is a beautiful song to 
this tune, ' Alas, my son, you little know ' — which is the 
composition of Miss Jenny Graham of Dumfries." This 
song, which appeared in Herd's Collection, 1776, in ' The 
Charmer,' vol. ii., 1782, and in other collections, will be 
found in this volume, at page 101. I am not aware of any 
other printed verses by this lady. 

The following notice of Miss Graham formed part of a 

142 * BIDE YE YET. 

communication, addressed to Charles K. Sharpe, Esq., by 
one of his relations : — 

" Miss Jenny Grahame was the daughter of Mr Grahame 
of Shaw, in Annandale. Hersprightly conversation, joined 
to perpetual good-humour, and all the moral virtues, ren- 
dered her a universal favourite in Dumfries, where she long 
resided. One of her particular friends was the witty Lady 
Johnstone of Westerhall (a daughter of Lord Elibank), 
whose bon mots and extraordinary benevolence were much 
talked of fifty years ago." 

Having been favoured through the kindness of Alex- 
ander Young of Harburn, Esq., and of her grand-nephew 
William Stewart, Esq. W.S., Gloucester Place, with some 
additional notices respecting this lady, I avail myself of this 
opportunity to give the substance of such particulars. 

Miss Jenny Graham was the eldest daughter of Wil- 
liam Graham of Shaw, Esq., in Annandale. She was born 
at Shaw, in the small but picturesque valley of Dryfe, in 
the year 1724. The estate, which has been in possession 
of the family for several centuries, was inherited by the 
descendants of Sir Nicol Graham, who married Mary [the 
Jfhite Lady ofAvenet), the daughter and heiress of Robert 
of Avenel. 

Mr Young's account is as follows : — " Miss Jenny 
Graham was one of the daughters of Graham of Shaw, an 
old and respectable family in Annandale, in the parish of 
Hutton and Corrie, of which my father and grandfather 
were ministers for a period of seventy-five years. 

" During the time of being at school, both at Annan and 
Dumfries, I frequently saw Miss Graham, and early con- 
ceived a high respect for her, as eminent in talents and 
qualifications above what often fall to the lot of her sex. 
She was a good poetess, and had a great deal of humour. 
When I first knew her, she resided chiefly at Wester Hall 
with Lady Johnstone, who was the sister of Lord Elibank, 

BIDE YE YET. * 143 

the mother of Sir James Johnstone and Sir William Pulte- 
ney, and a person of extraordinary and rare endowments. 
Miss Graham was one of the prime favourites of this lady 
till the day of her death. I afterwards knew Miss Graham 
when I was a boarder at Dr Chapman's, the master of the 
grammar-school at Dumfries. She then resided in the 
family of Major Walter Johnstone, brother to Sir James 
Johnstone of Westerhall, who was one of the original part- 
ners of Messrs Johnstone, Lawson, and Company, by whom 
bank-notes were first issued in Dumfries. I had the honour 
of being invited sometimes to dine at this gentleman's house, 
on Saturdays, and I shall never forget a scene at which I 
happened to be present. The Major had a very bad prac- 
tice of cursing and swearing at his servants, especially for 
any blunders or mistakes committed by them when waiting 
at table. He had, on one occasion, poured forth such a 
torrent of abuse and malediction against an unfortunate 
Annandale youth who had incurred his displeasure, that I 
expected Miss Graham would rebuke him for it ; but, on 
the contrary, she added such a peal of curses to the Major's, 
as astonished the whole company, and none more than the 
Major himself, who burst into a fit of laughter ; when she 
proposed to desist from such an unseemly practice, if he 
would promise to do the same; and I was told, several 
years thereafter, that he was hardly ever known thenceforth 
to swear at or curse a servant. 

" Miss Graham resided in Edinburgh when I attended 
the College there, and some of her nearest relations (Miss 
Bell of Crurie and others) then lived with her. I remem- 
ber her complaining occasionally of an indifferent state of 
health ; but that, in alleviation of asthma, she composed 
humorous Scottish songs, I regard as sheer nonsense ; 
although I know that she did actually write several pieces 
of humour, not, however, to be sung, but to be recited, and 
to raise a laugh in company ; and I have heard the late Dr 
John Rogerson (who was the son of a small farmer, in the 

144* BIDE YE YET. 

same parish with Mr Graham of Shaw, the father of Miss 
Graham) rehearse some of her poems of a very humorous 

In addition to the above statement of Miss Graham 
composing humorous verses, as a mode of alleviating her 
asthmatic complaint, (derived probably from Stenhouse's 
note at page 101,) Mr Allan Cunningham gives the follow- 
ing anecdote of Miss Graham : — " She was a fine dancer 
in her youth ; a young nobleman was so much cha;rmed 
with her graceful movements, and the music of her feet, 
that he enquired in what school she was taught ? ' In my 
mother's washing-tub/ was the answer." (Edit, of Burns, 
vol. viii. p. 59.) Mr Young remarks, that this anecdote, 
" I am satisfied, must appear to all those who knew her as 
well as I did, to be arrant nonsense, having no foundation 
in truth." The anecdote, however, is quite correct ; and 
the nobleman alluded to was John, second Earl of Hope- 
toun, who at the time was not very young, but a widower. 
Miss Graham used to say, in mentioning the circumstance, 
*' Guid forgi'e me for saying so ! I was never in a washing- 
tub in my life." 

Mrs Stewart, the mother of the gentleman above men- 
tioned (p. *142), and the niece of Miss Graham, remarks, 
that " Her private uneventful life can offer little to interest 
the pilblic; whilst the higher endowments of heart and 
intellect still endear her memory to a few sorrowing friends. 
Of the playful wit and genuine humour which rendered her 
the delight of her acquaintances, only the remembrance 
now remains. And the fugitive pieces of poetry, or rhymes, 
as she would have called them, though the frequent source 
of amusement and admiration to an attached circle, were 
merely intended to enliven the passing hours, and with 
them have mostly passed away. Their mutilated remains 
would now do little justice to her memory." 






The gaelic air, to which this song is set, was composed, it is 
said, by the pipe-major of the old highland regiment, about the 
period when it was first embodied under the appellation of 
" An freiceadan dubh,'' or, The Black Watch. This gallant 
regiment, the history of whose martial achievements would 
exhaust volumes, is now better known to the world by the 
title of The XLII. regiment of Royal Highlanders, or, as 
Cook, the celebrated player, used to style it, the brave forty- 
twa, a title which their undaunted valour, approved loyalty, 
and meritorious services, in various quarters of the globe, 
have so justly merited. The whimsical ballad, united to the 
air in the Museum, was written by Burns ; but though it is 
far from being bad, it cannot be ranked amongst the happiest 
productions of our celebrated bard. The incidents of this 
humorous political squib are of recent occurrence, and so ge- 
nerally known, that explanation is unnecessary. 


This ballad, beginning *' The Chevalier being void of 
fear," is adapted to the old tune of " Gillicrankie." It was 
Avritten soon after the battle of Tranent, by Mr Skirven, an 



opulent and respectable farmer in the county of Haddington, 
and father of the late eminent painter, Mr Skirven of Edin- 
burgh. The battle of Tranent Muir, between Prince 
Charles Stewart, commonly styled the Young Chevalier, at 
the head of the Highland army, and Sir John Cope, com- 
mander of the king's forces, was fought near the ancient vil- 
lage of Preston, in the shire of Haddington, on the 22d of 
September 1745. The royal army was completely routed, 
and Sir John Cope fled from the field with the utmost trepi- 
dation. He was afterwards tried by a court-martial for his 
conduct in action, and acquitted. 

The following notes may assist the reader to understand 
some of the allusions in the song : 

Stanza 2. — " The brave Lochiel'' was Donald Cameron 
of Lochiel, Esq. chief of the clan Cameron ; a gentleman of 
distinguished talents and valour. He was wounded at the 
battle of Culloden, but effected his escape to France in the 
same vessel with his young master. He was afterw&rds ap- 
pointed to the command of a French regiment, in considera- 
tion of his great services and misfortunes, and died in 1748. 

Stanza 5. — " Menteith the Great," was the reverend 
clergyman of Longformacus, and a volunteer in the royal 
army. Having accidentally surprised a Highlander, in the 
act of easing nature, the night previous to the battle, he 
pushed him over, seized his musket, and bore it off in triumph 
to Cope's camp. 

Stanza 5. — " And Simpson keen." This was another 
reverend volunteer, who boasted, that he .would soon bring 
the rebels to their senses by the dint of his pistols ; having a 
brace of tliem in his pockets, another in his holsters, and one 
in his belt. On approaching the enemy, however, his cour- 
age failed him, and he fled in confusion and terror alongst 
with the rest. 

Stanza 7. — " Myeie staid, and sair he paid the kain, 
man." He was a student of physic from Jamaica, and en- 


tered as a volunteer in the royal army, but was dreadfully 
mangled in the battle with the Highland claymores. - <i-^'s<" 

Stanza 8. — " But Gard'ner brave." This was the gal- 
lant Colonel James Gardiner, who commanded a regiment of 
the king's dragoons on that unfortunate day. Though dd-- 
serted by his troops, he disdained to fly, and, after maintain- 
ing an unequal contest, single-handed, with the enemy for a 
considerable time, he was at length despatched with the stroke 
of a Lochaber axe, at a short distance from his own house. 

Stanza 9. — " Lieutenant Smith," who left Major Bowie 
when lying on the field of battle, and unable to move with 
his wound, was of Irish extraction. It is reported, that, 
after publication of the ballad, he sent Mr Skirven a 
challenge to meet him at Haddington, and answer for his 
Conduct in treating him with such opprobrium. " Gang 
awa hack^'' said Mr Skirven to the messenger, " and tell Mr 
Smith, I Jiave nae leisure to gae to Haddington, but if he 
likes to come here, T'll tdk a look o' him, and if I think I can 
fecht him Flljecht him, and if no — Til just do as he did at 
Preston — Fll rin awa.'''' 

The old, humorous, and dog-latin ballad, entitled, " Prae- 
lium Gillicrankium," by Professor Herbert Kennedy, of 
Edinburgh University, is a literary curiosity, and may be 
sung to the same tune. Its author was descended of the an- 
cient family of Kennedy of Haleaths, in Annandale. This 
macaronic ballad is printed in the second volume of the Scots 
Musical Museum. 


Burns informs us, that this comic song, beginning My 
hea"t was ance as hlythe and free, as simmer days were lang, 
was written by himself, with the exception of the chorus, 
which is old. Alluding to this song, our poet modestly 
says, " Here let me once for all apologize for many sUly 
compositions of mine in this work. Many of the beautiful 
airs wanted words. In the hurry of other avocations, if 1 


could string a parcel of rhymes together any thing near toler- 
able, I was fain to let them pass. He must be an excellent 
poet whose every performance is excellent." — Reliques. The 
old song will not do in this work ; the tune is pretty enough. 
Aird published it in the second volume of his Collection, 
adapted for the violin, or german flute. 


These tender and pathetic verses, beginning *' All lovely 
on the sultry heacli, expiring Streplion lay^'' to the tune of 
The Gordons had the guiding o't, were written by William 
Wallace of Cairnhill, Esq. in Ayrshire. The Strephon and 
Lydia, as Dr Blacklock informed Burns, were, perhaps, the 
lovehest couple of their time. The gentleman was commonly 
known by the name of Beau Gibson, The lady was the 
gentle Jean who is celebrated in Hamilton of Bangour's 
Poems. Having frequently met at public places, they form- 
ed a reciprocal attachment, which their friends thought dan- 
gerous, as their resources were by no means adequate to 
their tastes and habits of life- To elude the bad conse- 
quences of such a connection, Strephon was sent abroad 
with a commission, and perished in Admiral Vernon's unfor- 
tunate expedition to Carthagena, in the year 1740. 



The words and music of this plaintive little lyric were 
communicated by the late Dr Beattie of Aberdeen. Both of 
them, I believe, are of his own composition. Johnson, the 
original proprietor of the Museum, calls the tune lanthe the 
lovely; but he was mistaken ; it is quite a different air. The 
tune of " lanthe the lovely" was composed by Mr John Bar- 
ret of London, organist, about the yeai" 1700, and was after- 
wards pubUshed in the third volume of the Pills, in 1703, to 
a song of three stanzas, beginning 

Ianthe the lovely, the joy of her swain, 
By Iphis was lov'd, and lov'd Iphis again ; 


She liv'd in the youth, and the youth in the fair, 
Their pleasure was equal, and equal their share ; 
No time nor enjoyment their dotage withdrew. 
But the longer they liv'd still fonder they grew. 

Barret's tune was selected by Mr Gay for one of his songs 
in the Beggar's Opera, beginning When he holds up his hand 
arraigned for life. Oswald also published the same English 
tune in his Caledonian Pocket Companion, Book Fourth. 


This air has generally been considered of Irish origin, be- 
cause it was adapted to a song written by John O'Keefe, 
Esq. in his comic opera of the Poor Soldier, which was first 
acted at Covent Garden in 1783. The song begins Since 
love is the plan, Pll love if I can. But the tune was com- 
posed by the late John Bruce, an excellent fiddle-player in 
Dumfries, upwards of thirty years before that period. Burns, 
in corroboration of this fact, says, " this I know, Bruce, who 
was an honest man, though a red-wud Highlander, constant- 
ly claimed it ; and by all the old musical people here, (viz. 
Dumfries) he is believed to be the author of it." Reliques. 
This air was a great favourite of Burns. In 1 787, he wrote 
the two stanzas in the Museum, and in August 1793, he 
added two more. They are here annexed to complete the 

whistle, and I'll come to you, my lad, * 
O whistle, and I'll come to you, my lad, 
Tho' father and mither and a' should gae mad, 
O whistle, and I'll come to you, my lad. 

* In some MSS. the two first stanzas are varied, as under— 
O whistle, and I'll come to thee, my jo, 
O whistle, and I'll come to thee, my jo, 
Tho' father and mither and a' should say no, 
O whistle, and I'll come to thee, my jo. 

But warily tent, when you come to court me, 
And come na unless the back yett be a-jee ; 
Syne up the back style, and let naebody see, 
And come as ye were na coming to me. 


Come down the back stairs when ye come to court me. 
Come down the back stairs when ye come to court me. 
Come down the back stairs, and let naebody see. 
And come as ye were na coming to me. 
And come, &c. 

O whistle, (Sfc. 
At kirk or at market, whene'er you meet me. 
Gang by me as tho' that ye cared na a flee ; 
But steal me a blink o' your bonnie black ee. 
Yet look as ye were na looking at me. 
Yet look, &c. 

O whistle, Sfc. 

Ay vow and protest that ye care na for me, 
And whiles you may lightlie my beauty a wee ; 
But court nae anither, tho' jockin ye be. 
For fear that she wile your fancy frae me. 
For fear, &c. 

O whistle, <Sfc. 

The title and chorus of this song are old ; the rest of it 
was composed by Burns. When the air is played quick, it 
answers veiy well as a dancing tune, and Bremner published 
it as a reel in his Collection about the year 1758. The fol- 
lowing stanza may serve as a specimen of the old words. 

My minnie coft me a new gown, 
The kirk maun hae the gracing o't. 
Were I to lie with you, kind sir, 
I'm fear'd ye'd spoil the lacing o't. 

I'm o'er young, I'm o'er young, 

I'm o'er young to marry yet, 

I'm our young, 'twad be a sin 

To tak me frae my mammie yet. 

This old sprightly tune is evidently the progenitor of that 
fine modern strathspey, called Loch Eroch Side. See Notes, 
Song 78. 


This song, beginning Look where my dear Hamilla smiles, 
appears in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, 1724, with the 
following title, « To Miss A. H. (i. e. Miss Anne Hamil- 
ton, afterwards married to Professor M , in the Univer- 
sity of Edinburgh) on seeing her at a concert, to the tune of 



The bonniest lass in a" the warld^ It is subscribed, 2. C. be- 
ing the second song which Mr Crawfurd furnished to Ram- 
say's work, having previously sent him the verses to the tune 
of " The bush aboon Traquair,*" which is the first song of 
Crawfurd in that Miscellany. " The bonniest lass in a' the 
warld," was the title of a still older song, which Mr Craw- 
furd transferred to the above mentioned lady, who was a re- 
lation of his friend, Mr Hamilton of Bangour. Both the 
song and music are in the Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. The 
original song of " The bonniest lass in a' the warld," as well 
as the name of so celebrated a beauty, I have not yet been 
able to discover. 


The music and words of this song, beginning *' By a 
jfldurmuring stream a fair Shepherdess dwelt," appear in the 
Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. In Ramsay's Tea-Table Mis- 
cellany the verses are subscribed X. to denote that the au- 
thor was unknown to him. I have heard this song attribut- 
ed to Lord President Forbes, but have been unable to trace 
it to him authentically as the author. Mr Burns, however, 
says, that the verses were composed by a Mr R. Scott, from 
the town or neighbourhood of Biggar. 


Both the air and words of this ballad are unquestionably 
ancient, but, having been taken down from oral recitation, it 
is impossible to ascertain the era of either. It was rescued 
from oblivion by old David Herd. The music, it will be ob- 
served, consists of one sti*ain only, which is the minor mode, 
and the sixth of the key is altogether omitted. These are 
strong proofs of its antiquity. With regard to the ballad it- 
self, I find the leading incidents to be similar to those in a 
ballad published by Sir Walter Scott, in his " Minstrelsy of 
the Border," entitled, " The original Broom of Cowden- 
knows ;" but, from attentive examination of both pieces, the 

112 ex. BONNIE MAY. 

" Original Broom'' appears to be nothing else than an ampli- 
fication of the older and more rude ballad in the Museum. 
Both ballads, however, appear to refer to an amour of a gen- 
tleman in Stirlingshire with a " bonnie south country lass," 
Avhich ended happily for both parties. Auchentrone I sus- 
pect to be a corruption of Auchentroich, an estate in the coun- 
ty of Stirling; and Okland Hills, mentioned in Sir W. Scott's 
ballad, seem to be the Ochil Hills in the same county. 


The tune is very ancieiit; it is in Skene's MSS. under the 
title of " The keiking Glass." This very humorous bal- 
lad is also in the Orpheus Caledonius ; but from the struc- 
ture of the melody, it is clearly the composition of a very 
early period. Although the old verses were retouched by Allan 
Ramsay, Burns observes, that Mr Johnson, from a foolish 
notion of delicacy, has left out the last stanza of the original 
ballad, in which Janet exhibits a most comic picture of the 
frail and nearly unserviceable state of her old spinning wheel. 

My spinning wheel is auld and stiff. 
The rock o't winna stand, sir. 
To keep the temper-pin in tiff, 
Employs right aft my hand, sir. 
Jilak the best o't that ye can, 

Janet, Janet ; 
But like it never wail a man, 

My Jo, Janet. 

In December 1793, Burns wrote the following comic bal- 
lad to the same tune, in which he appears to have equalled, 
if not surpassed, the rich humour of the original 

Written by Burns, to the tune of " My Jo, Janet." 

Husband, husband, cease your strife. 
Nor longer idly rave, sir ; 
Tho' I am your wedded wife. 
Yet I am not your slave, sir. 
One of two must still obey, 

Nancy, Nancy; 
Is it man or woman ? say. 

My spouse, Nancy. 

CXI. MY JO, JANET. ll'i 

If 'tis still the lordly word. 
Service and obedience ; 
I'll desert my sovereign lord. 
And so good-bye allegiance I 
Sad will I be if so bereft, 

Nancy, Nancy; 
Yet I'll try to make a shift. 

My spouse, Nancy. 

My poor heart then break it must, 
My last hour I'm near it ; 
When you lay me in the dust. 
Think, think how ye will bear it ! 
/ ivill hope and trust in Heaven, 

Nancy, Nancy : 
Strength to bear it will be given. 

My spouse, Nancy. 


Well, Sir, from the silent dead. 
Still I'll try to daunt you ; 
Ever round your midnight bed. 
Horrid sp'rites will haunt you. 
/'// wed another like my dear 

Nancy, Nancy ; 
Then all hell will Jly for fear. 

My spouse, Nancy. 

This song was written by Alexander Robertson of Struan, 
Esq. The tune was composed by Mr James Oswald, who 
published it in his fourth book, under the title of " The 
Maid's Complaint." In Struan's Poems there is an additional 
stanza to this song ; but Johnson, very properly, rejected it on 
account of its inferiority to the rest. 

This old sprightly air appears in Playford's " Dancing-mas- 
ter," first printed, in 1657, under the title of " A Scotch 
Ayre." In the Scots Musical Museum, two songs are adapted 
to this tune, the first of which was wholly written by Burns, 
with the exception of the chorus, which is very old. The 
second song consists of two stanzas of the ancient ballad, call- 



ed " The Birks of Abergeldie." Burns composed his song 
in September 1787, while standing under the Falls of Aber- 
feldy, near Moness, in Perthshire. He was, at this period, 
on a tour through the Highlands with his friend, Mr Wil- 
liam Nicol, one of the masters of the high school in Edin- 


Macpherson, a daring robber, in the beginning of last 
century, was condemned and executed at Inverness. While 
under sentence of death, he is said to have composed this tune, 
which he called his own Lament or Farewell. It is also re- 
ported, that when he came to the fatal tree, he played this 
air upon a favourite violin, and, holding up the instrument, 
offered it to any one of his clan who would undertake to play 
the tune over his body at the lykewake. As no one answered, 
he dashed it to pieces on the executioner's head, and flung 
himself from the ladder. — See Cromek's Introduction to Burns' s 
Reliques, vol. i. p. 3. London, 1810. 

This story appears to me to be partly probable and partly 
false. That this depraved and incorrigible robber might 
compose the tune even while lying under the awful sentence 
of death may possibly be true ; but, that he played it while 
standing on the ladder with the halter about his neck, I 
do not believe ; because every criminal, before he is conducted 
to the place of execution, has his arms closely pinioned, in 
which situation it is physically impossible for him to play on 
a violin or any such instrument. 

The ballad in the Museum, beginning " Farewell ye 
dungeons dark and strong," is wholly the composition of 
Burns. The wild stanzas which he puts into the mouth of 
the desperado exhibit a striking proof of his astonishing 
powers of invention and poetic fancy. There was another 
ballad composed on the execution of this robber long before 
Burns was born. It is preserved in Herd's Collection, vol. 
i. p. 99, 100, and 101 ; but it is too long for insertion, as 
well as greatly inferior to the stanzas written by Burns. 




This ballad, the editor is informed, was composed about 
the beginning of last century by a young widow in Galloway, 
whose husband was drowned on a voyage to Holland. The 
third verse in the Museum is spurious nonsense, and John- 
son has omitted the last stanza altogether. Herd published 
a fragment of this ballad in his Collection in 1 769. In Os- 
wald's second book, printed about the year 1740, there is a 
tune, apparently of English origin, to the same dirge, which 
Ritson adapted to that part of the ballad taken from Herd's 
copy ; but the tune is very indifferent. The air in the Mu- 
seum is the genuine one. The ballad is constantly sung to 
this Lowland melody, and it is inserted with the same title in 
an old MSS. Music-book which belonged to Mr Bremner, 
formerly music-seller in Edinburgh. It was from this air that 
the late Mr William Marshall, butler to the Duke of Gordon, 
formed the tune called " Miss Admiral Gordon's Strathspey," 
principally by adding a second part to the old air. Burns 
wrote a beautiful song to the tune thus altered, beginning 
" Of a' the airts the wind can blaw," which is inserted in the 
third volume of the Museum. The editor of the late Col- 
lection of Gaelic Airs in 1816, puts in a claim fot The Low- 
lands of Holland being a Highland air, and that it is called, 
" Thuile toabh a sheidas goagh." By writing a few Gaelic 
verses to each Lowland song, every Scottish melody might 
easily be transferred to the Highlands. This is rather 
claiming too much. The stanza omitted in the Museum is 
the following : 

O HAUD your tongue, my daughter dear. 

Be still, and be content. 

There are mair lads in Galloway, 

Ye need nae sair lament. 

O ! there is nane in Galloway, 

There's nane at a' for me ; 

For I never loved a lad but ane. 

And he's drowned in the sea. 




This prosaic song is a medley of various passages select- 
ed from the Poems of Ossian, as translated by Macpherson. 
hi the hall I lay by night. Mine eyes were half closed in 
sleep. Sq/i music came to mine ear. It was the maid of 
' Selma ;' is taken from the poem of Oina Morul. Behind 
it heaved the breast of a maid, white as the bosom of a swan, 
rising on swift-rolling waves; from the poem of Colna Dona. 
She raised the mighty song, for she hnew that my soul was a 
stream that Jlowed at the pleasant sounds. Oina Moeul. 
She came on his t^-oubled soul liJce a beam to the dark-heaving 
ocean when it bursts from a cloud, and brightens the Jbamy 
side of a wave. Colna Dona. Cavil accompanied his voice. 
The music was like the memory of Joys that are past ; pleasant 
and mournful to the soul. Death of Cuchullin. 

The compiler of this song appears to have founded his 
medley on the old air of " Todlin' Hame," which has assum- 
ed various shapes in common as well as treble time. In 
Oswald's Collection is a medley called " The Battle of Fal- 
kirk,"" in which " Lude's Lament" is evidently a slight alter- 
ation of " Todlin"' Hame." In a more recent Collection, 
another medley appears, called " The Highland Battle," in 
which, " The Lament for the chief," is obviously taken from 
" Lude's Lament" in Oswald. The melody of " The Maid of 
Selma," however, is very pleasant, especially when sung to 
those beautiful lines selected from the works of the ancient 
Gaelic bard. 


■ This song, beginning " Nae gentle dames, though ne'er 
sae fair," was written by Burns, and adapted to the old 
dancing tune, called " M'Lauchlin's Scots Measure." 

Burns informs us, that this song was composed by him 
at a very early period of his life, and before he was at all 
known in the world, " My Highland lassie," says he, " 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, we met, by appointment, 
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 our projected change of life. 
At the close of 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." Reliques. 

Mr Cromek further acquaints us with the following par- 
ticulars respecting the parting of Burns with the object of 
his first love. " This adieu," says he, " was performed with 
all those simple and striking ceremonies, which rustic senti- 
ment has devised to prolong tender emotions, and to inspire 
awe. The lovers stood on each side of a small purling 
brook ; they laved their hands in its limpid stream, and, 
holding a Bible between them, pronounced their vows to be 
faithful to each other. They parted — never to meet again. 

" The anniversary of Mary CampheWs death, for that was 
her name, awakening in the sensitive mind of Burns the 
most lively emotion, he retired from his family, then resid- 
ing on the farm of Ellisland, and wandered solitary on the 
banks of the Nith, and about the farm-yard, in great agitation 
of mind nearly the whole of the night. His agitation at length 
became so great, that he threw himself down at the side of a 
corn stack, and there conceived his sublime and tender elegy, 
his address To Mary in Heaven^'' See Select Scottish Songs, 
with Remarks by Cromek, vol. i. p, 115. London 1810. 


The air of " The Northern Lass" appears in Oswald's 
first book, page 5, which was published about the year 1740. 
The tune is pretty enough, but I rather think it is an imi- 


tation of our style, and not a genuine Scottish air. The ver- 
ses to which it was originally adapted seem to be of Englisli 
origin. They are here subjoined. 


Come take your glass, the northern lass 
So prettily advised, 
I drank her health, and really was 
Agreably surprised. 
Her shape so neat, her voice so svi'eet. 
Her air and mien so free ; 
The Syren charm'd me from my meat^ 
But take your drink, said she. 

If from the north such beauty came. 
How is it that I feel 
Within my breast that glowing flame 
No tongue can ere reveal ; 
Though cold and raw the north winds blow. 
All summer's on her breast. 
Her skin is like the driven snow. 
But summer all the rest. 

Her heart may southern climates melt. 
Though frozen now it seems. 
That joy with pain be equal felt. 
And balanced in extremes ; 
Then, like our genial wine, she'll charm 
With love my panting breast ; 
Me, like our sun, her heart shall warm. 
Be ice to all the rest. 

Mr William Fisher of Hereford likewise composed a tune 
to the same verses, both of which were published in the first 
volume of Robertson's Calliope, in 1 739$ but it is quite dif- 
ferent from that in Oswald's Collection, and in Johnson's 
Museum. The verses' united to Oswald's air in the Museum, 
beginning " Tho' cruel fate should bid us part," were writ- 
ten by Burns a short time before his marriage with Miss 
Jean Armour, who is the heroine of this and several other of 
our bard's songs. 


This wild and characteristic melody is said to be the com- 


position of Oswald. It was published alongst with the words, 
which are selected from Ossian's " Songs of Selma," in 1762. 

This tune appears in the old Virginal Book already men- 
tioned, in the editor's possession, imder the title of " Let 
Jamie's Lad allane," which was probably the original title. 
Mr Samuel Akeroyde put a bass to it, and published it in 
Henry Play ford's " Banquet of Music," 1692, with two 
pseudo-Scottish stanzas, beginning " Fairest Jenny I mun 
love thee." The song to which the tune is adapted in the 
Museum, beginning " Allan by his griefs excited," was 
written, I am told, by Dr Blacklock. 



This humorous song, beginning " There was ance a 
May, and she lo'ed na men," was written by Lady Grace 
Home, daughter of the first Earl of Marchmont, afterwards 
wife of George Baillie, Esq. of Jarviswood, near Lanark. It 
was printed in Ramsay's Tea- Table Miscellany, in 1724, 
and again in 1725, with the music, in the Orpheus Cale- 
donius. The tune consists of a single strain, and is evidently 
very ancient. 

This beautiful air appears in Mrs Crockafs Music-Book,, 
written in 1709; but the tune is undoubtedly far more an- 
cient, for Ramsay has preserved the old words in his Tea- 
Table Miscellany, 1724, under the title of " The auld yel- 
low-hair'd Laddie." The old verses are also inserted in the 
Museum, together with two other songs to the same air, 
both of which were written by Ramsay. Thomson selected 
the first of Ramsay's songs, beginning " In April, when 
primroses paint the sweet plain," and published it with the 
music in his Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. Watts reprinted' 
it in the first volume of his Musical Miscellany, in 1729. 

120 cxxii. — THE yellow-hair'd laddie. 

Ramsay's second song to this air, beginning " When first 
my dear laddie gaed to the green hill," was afterwards intro- 
duced as one of the songs in his Gentle Shepherd. 


The humorous verses, beginning " merry may the 
maid be that marries the miller," with the exception of the 
first stanza, which belongs to a much older song, were writ- 
ten by Sir John Clerk of Pennycuik, Bart, one of the 
Barons of the Court of Exchequer in Scotland. The first 
four stanzas were published by Yair in his Collection of 
Songs, called " The Charmer,"" vol. ii. in 1751. Sir John 
afterwards added a fifth stanza, as the song ended too 
abruptly at the conclusion of the fourth, and in this amend- 
ed form it was pubhshed by David Herd, in 17(>9 and 1776. 
Tlie thought expressed in the two last lines, beginning 
" Who'd be a king," appears to be borrowed from a similar 
idea in the old ballad of " Tarry Woo." — -See notes on song 
No 4^5. 



This is a very pretty and lively old air. " Wap at the 
Widow, my Laddie," was the title of an old but indelicate 
song, which Ramsay new-modelled, retaining the spirit, but 
not the licentiousness, of the original. Thomson very pro- 
perly preferred Ramsay's verses, beginning " The widow 
can bake and the widow can brew," and united them to this 
old melody in his Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. 



This charming pastoral air, which consists of one single 
strain, terminating on the fifth of the key in the major mode, 
is very ancient. A very indifferent set of the tune, under the 
title of " The brave Lads of Gala Water," with variations 
by Oswald, appears in his Pocket Companion, Book viii. 
That in the Museum is genuine. This tune was greatly ad- 


mired by the celebrated Dr Haydn, who harmonized it for 
Mr William Whyte's Collection of Scottish Songs. On the 
MSS. of the music, which I have seen, the Doctor expressed 
his opinion of the melody, in the best English he was master 
of, in the following short but emphatic sentence : " This one 
Dr Haydn favorite song." In the Museum, two songs are 
adapted to the tune of " Braw, braw Lads of Gala Water." 
The first is a fragment of the ancient song, as preserved in 
Herd's Collection ; but Herd had mixed it with two verses 
belonging to a very different song, called " The lassie lost 
her silken snood." The only fragment of the old song is the 
following : 

BraWj braw lads of Gala Water ; 
Braw, braw lads of Gala Water ; 
I'll kilt my coats aboon my knee. 
And follow my love thro' the water. 
O'er yon bank and o'er yon brae. 
O'er yon moss amang the heather, 
I'll kilt my coat aboon my knee. 
And follow my love thro' the water. 

The other song in the Museum, to the same tune, begin- 
ning No repose can I discover, was written by Robert Fer- 
gusson the Scottish poet. In January 1793, Burns wrote 
the following song to this favourite air : 

There's braw braw lads on Yarrow braes. 

That wander thro' the blooming heather ; 
But Yarrow braes nor Ettrick shaws 

Can match the lads o' Galla Water. 

But there is ane, a secret ane, 

Aboon them a' I loe him better. 
And I'll be his and he'll be mine. 

The bonnie lad o' Galla Water. 
Altho' his daddie was nae laird. 

And tho' I hae nae mickle tocher. 
Yet rich in kindest truest love 

We'll tent our flocks by Galla Water. 


It ne'er was wealth, it ne'er was wealth 
That coft contentment, peace, or pleasure. 

The bands and bliss o' mutual love, 
that's the chiefest warld's treasure. 


The sentiments in the above song are natural and pleas- 
ing, yet the poet appears to have been regardless of his 
rhymes — heather and better, tocher and water — do not 
rhyme very well. But he likely did so in imitation of many 
of the older song composers, who were not over fastidious 
about this point. 

This river Gala, of poetical celebrity, rises in the county 
of Mid Lothian, and after receiving a considerable augmenta- 
tion of its stream from the water of Heriot, runs south, and 
passing the villages of Stow and Galashiels, falls into the 
Tweed about four miles above Melrose, 


This ballad, beginning " One night I dreamed I lay most 
easy," is another production of Mr James Tytler, of whom 
mention has been made in a former part of this work. 


This humorous old song, to the tune of " Jenny dang 
the Weaver," was altered and enlarged by Ramsay, who, for 
the benefit of his English readers, changed the name of the 
air into " Jenny beguiPd the Webster." Thomson published 
the song, Avith Ramsay's additions, in his Orpheus Cale- 
donius, in 1725. The old song may be seen in Herd's Col- 
lection. It begins, 

As I came in by Fislierrow, ' 
Musselburgh was near me, 
I threw off my mussel pock. 
And courted with my dearie. 
Up stairs, down stairs. 
Timber stairs fear me, 
I thought it lang to ly my lane, 
Wlien I'm sae near my dearie. 
&c. &c. &c. 



The first stanza of this song is old, the rest of it was writ- 
ten by Ramsay. Thon;son adapted Ramsay's improved song 


to the old air in his Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725, from whence 
it was copied into the first volume of Watt's Musical Mis- 
cellany, printed at London in 1729- The tune also appears 
in Craig's Collection in 1 730, and in many others subsequent 
to that period. 

The heroines of the song, viz. Miss Elizabeth Bell, daugh- 
ter of Mr Bell of Kinvaid, Perthshire, and Miss Mary Gray, 
daughter of Mr Gray of Lyndock, are reported to have been 
handsome young ladies, and very intimate friends. While 
Miss Bell was residing at Lyndock, on a visit to Miss Gray 
in the year 1666, the plague broke out. With a view to 
avoid the contagion, they built a bower, or small cottage, in 
a very retired and romantic place called Burn-braes, about 
three-quarters of a mile from Lyndock House. Here they 
resided a short time ; but the plague raging with increased 
fury, they at length caught the infection, after receiving a 
visit from a gentleman, who was their mutual admirer, and 
here they both died. They were interred about half a mile 
from the mansion-house ; and Major Berry, the late proprie- 
tor of that estate, carefully inclosed the spot, and consecrated 
it to the memory of these amiable and celebrated friends. 

Lyndock is now the property of Thomas Graham, Lord 
Lyndock, the gallant hero of Barossa, Mr Gay selected the 
tune of Bessy Bell and Mary Gray for one of his songs in the 
Beggar's Opera, beginning " A curse attends that woman's 
love, who always would be pleasing," acted at London in 1728. 



This song, beginning Stay^ my charmer^ can youleave me, 
was written by Bvirns, and adapted to an old Gaelic tune of 
one strain, entitled An Gilleadh diibh, or The Black-hair' d 
Lad. This simple and pathetic air was probably composed 
by one of those ancient minstrels who cheered the hardy and 
brave sons of Caledonia in former ages, but whose names are 
lost in obscurity and oblivion. 

In Captain Eraser's Gaelic Airs, lately published, a set of 


this tune appears in two strains, loaded with trills^ crescendos, 
diminuendos^ cadences ad libitum, and other modern Italian 
graces. This gentleman professes, however, to give the airs 
in their ancient and native purity, but ex uno disce omnes ! 



A FRAGMENT of this ancicnt and beautiful ballad. Bishop 
Percy informs us, is inserted in his Manuscript Poems, writ- 
ten at least as early, if not before the beginning of the reign 
of Queen Elizabeth in 1558. It consists of seven stanzas of 
eight lines each. A more perfect version of the ballad, but 
evidently modernised, appears in Watson's first Collection, 
printed at Edinburgh in 1711. This ballad, with the music, 
was afterwards published by Thomson in his Orpheus Cale- 
donius in 1725, from whence it was copied into Johnson's 

The subject of the ballad, as the Bishop informs us, relates 
to a private story: " A lady of quality, of the name of Both- 
well, or rather Boswell, having been, together with her 
child, deserted by her husband or lover, composed these af- 
fecting lines herself." See his Ancient Songs and Ballads, 
vol. ii. p. 194. The poetess must indeed have felt what she 
has so pathetically described. Who can peruse the follow- 
ing stanzas, without feeling emotions of tenderness and com- 
passion for the lovely mourner contemplating her smiling and 
innocent babe, while lying in his cradle, and unconscious yet 
either of his own or his mother's forlorn and unhappy fate.'* 

BaloWj my boy, lie still and sleep ; 
It grieves me sair to hear thee weep ; 
If thou'lt be silent^ I'll be glad ; 
Thy mourning makes my heart full sad. 
Balow, my boy, thy mother's joy. 
Thy father bred me great annoy. 

Balow, Sfc. 
Balow, my darling, sleep a while. 
And when thou wakest sweetly smile ; 
But smile not, as thy father did. 
To cozen maids ; nay, God forbjd ! 


For in thine eye his look I see — 
The tempting look that ruin'd me. 
Balow, Sic. 

But curse not him — perhaps now he. 
Stung with remorse, is blessing thee. 
Perhaps at death ; for who can tell 
Whether the Judge of heaven and heU, 
By some proud foe, has struck the blow. 
And laid the dear deceiver low ! 

Balow, <^c. 
Balow, my boy, I'U weep for thee; 
Too soon, alas ! thou'lt weep for me ; 
Thy griefs are growing to a sum, 
God grant thee patience when they come ! 
Born to sustain a mother's shame, 
A hapless fate — a bastard's name ! 

Balow, (?fc. 


This tune occurs in Skene's MSS. written prior to 1598, 
under the title " Alace this night yat we suld sinder," which 
was undoubtedly the first hne of a very ancient song, now 
lost. Whether it was worthy of being preserved for its ten- 
der pathos, or comic humour, or deserving of being consign- 
ed to oblivion from its indelicacy, can only now be matter of 
conjecture. But it is clear that it was a well-known song in 
Scotland during the reign of James the Sixth. 

Both the songs, which are adapted to this ancient tune in 
the Museum, were written by Ramsay. The first of these, 
beginning " With broken words and downcast eyes," was 
published with the music in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725, 
and the latter, beginning " Speak on, speak thus, and still 
my grief," was introduced as a song for " Peggie" in the 
Gentle Shepherd. 


This song was written by Burns, as descriptive of the 

feelings of James Drummond, Viscount of Strathallan, who, 

after his father"'s death at the battle of CuUoden, escaped, 

with several of his countrymen, to France, where they died 


126 cxxxri. — strathallan's lament. 

in exile. The air was composed by the late Mr Allan Mas- 
terton, teacher of arithmetic and penmanship, Edinburgh, 
who was an intimate friend and acquaintance of the poet. 
Masterton possessed a good ear and a fine taste for music, 
and, as ^n amateur, played the violin remarkably well. 

Burns gives us the following account of this song in his 
Reliques : " This air is the composition of one of the wor- 
thiest and best men living — Allan Masterton, schoolmaster in 
Edinburgh. As he and I were both sprouts of Jacobitism, 
we agreed to dedicate the words and air to that cause. But, 
to tell the matter of fact, except when mj passions were heat- 
ed by some accidental cause, my Jacobitism was merely by 
way of vive la bagatelle!''' — Reliques. 

Written ly Burns to a tune composed hy Allan Masterton. 

Thickest night surround my dwelling ! 
Howling tempests o'er me rave ! 
Turbid torrents wint'ry swelling. 
Roaring by my lonely cave. 
Crystal streamlets gently flowing. 
Busy haunts of base mankind ; 
Western breezes softly blowing. 
Suit not my distracted mind. 
In the cause of right engaged. 
Wrongs injurious to redress ; 
Honour's war we strongly waged. 
But the heavens denied success. 
Ruin's wheel has driveij o'er us. 
Not a hope that dare attend. 
The wide world is all before us. 
But a world without a friend. 

This song was composed by Burns, as appears from the 
MSS. in his own hand-writing now before me. With re- 
spect to the tune, we have the following account in his Re- 
liques: " Dr Walker, who was minister at Moffat in 1772, 
and is now (1791) Professor of Natural Histoiy in the Uni- 
versity of Edinburgh, told Mr Riddel the following anec- 
dote concerning this air. He said, that some gentlemen, rid- 


ing- a few years ago through Liddesdale, stopped at a hamlet 
consisting of a few houses, called Mosspaul, when they were 
struck with this tune, which an old woman, spinning on a 
i-ock (distaff) at her door, was singing. All she could tell 
concerning it was, that she was taught it when a child, and 
it was called " What will I do gin my Hoggie die ?* No 
person, except a few females at Mosspaul, knew this fine old 
tune, which in all probability would have been lost, had not 
one of the gentlemen, who happened to have a flute with him, 
taken it down." The gentleman who took doAvn the tune 
was the late Mr Stephen Clarke, organist, Edinburgh. But 
he had no occasion for a flute to assist him, as stated by Dr 


This song is very ancient, and exceedingly humorous. 
Ramsay, however, polished it a little, to render it less objec- 
tionable on the score of delicacy ; but Thomson published 
the old version, along with the original music, in his Oi'pheus 
Caledonius, in 1725. In Johnson's Museum, Ramsay ""s im- 
proved copy is adopted ; the following stanzas will, how- 
ever, afford a specimen of the older song. 

He gae to me an ell of lace. 

And his beard new shaven ; 
He bade me wear the Highland dress. 

The carle trows that I'll hae him. 
Hout aiva, S^-c. 

He gae to me a ham sark, 

And his beard new shaven ; 
He said he'd kiss me in the dark. 

For he trows that I'll hae him. 

Hoivt awa, I maun hae him ; 

Aye, forsooth! I'll e'en hae him; 
New hose and new shoon, 

And his beard neiu shaven. 

* Haggle, a young sheep after it is smeared, and before it is first shorn. 
The other song in the Museum, to the sanie tune, beginning " What words, 
dear Nancy, will prevail," was written by Dr Blacklock. 


A RESPECTABLE lady of my acquaintance, who was born 
in 1738, informs me, that this was reckoned a very old song 
even in her infancy. The verses in the Museum were 
slightly touched by Burns from the fragment of the ancient 
song, which is inserted in Herd's Collection, vol. ii. p. 203. 

This elegant song was written by William Hamilton- of 
Bangour, Esq. about the year 1720, adapted to the fine old 
air called " Hallow-e'en," and published by Thomson in his 
Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. The tune is inserted in a 
very old music-book, in square-shaped notes, in the editor's 
possession, under the title of " Hallow Evine," but the ori- 
ginal song is lost. 


This very humorous song was written about the begin- 
ning of last century by Mr Walkingshaw of that ilk, near 
Paisley. Thomson published it with the sprightly old aii- in 
his Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. It is probable, however, 
that a much older, though certainly not a more truly comic 
song, had previously been adapted to this lively tune. Ram- 
say, by a judicious alteration of one word in stanza first, an- 
other in stanza third, and one line in stanza sixth, improved 
this song very much. 


This old air appears in Oswald's Collection. It seems 
clearly to be the progenitor of the well-known tune called 
" Lillibulero," which is claimed as the composition of Henry 
Purcell, who died in 1695. — See J. Stafford Smith's Musica 
Antiqua, vol. ii. p. 185, and John Playford's MusicJis Hand- 
maid, published in 1678 ; in both of which it is called A new 
Irish Tune. Purcell, however, appears only to have made a 
very slight alteration on the second strain of the air. The tune 



of Lilliburlero was common both in Scotland and England be- 
fore Purcell was born ; the title of the song was the pass-word 
used among the Papists in Ireland at the horrible massacre 
of the Protestants in 1641. The tune itself was printed in 
Playford's Dancing-Master in 1657, under the title of " Joan's 
Placket," and Purcell was only born in the year 1658. The 
notes of the air are subjoined. 

From Playford's Dancing-Matter, ^printed in 1657. 

To this air also an Anglo-Irish song, beginning " Ho ! 
broder Teague, do'st hear the decree,"" was adapted in 1686, 
which made such an impression on the royal army, as to con- 
tribute greatly towards the Revolution in 1688. 

The two humorous stanzas, beginning " Her daddie for- 
bad," to which the tune of " Jumpin' John" are united in 
the Museum, were communicated by Burns. They are a 
fragment of the old humorous ballad, with some verbal cor- 



Mr Tytler, in his very ingenious and masterly Disser- 
tation on Scottish Music, observes, that " the distinguish- 
ing strain (character) of our old melodies is plaintive 
melancholy; and what makes them soothing and affect- 
ing to a great degree, is the constant use of the concordant 
tones, the third and fifth of the scale, often ending upon the 
fifth, and some of them on the sixth of the scale. By this 
artless standard some of our Scottish melodies may be traced, 
such as. Gill Morrice — There came a Ghost to Margarets 
Door — Laddie I maun he thee — Hap me wi' thy Petti- 
coat. I mean the old sets of these airs ; as the last air, which 



I take to be one of our oldest songs, is so modernized as 
scarce to have a trace of its ancient simplicity. The simple 
original air is still sung by nurses in the country, as a lullaby 
to still their babes to sleep." The reader is here presented 
with the original air in its ancient purity. The copy which 
is inserted in Ritson's Historical Essay, is erroneous in seve- 
ral particulars, as will appear obvious on comparing it with 
the following 







I'll hap ye wi' my petticoat^ My ain kind dow, I'll 


Fi FFF=P^ 



hap ye wi' my pet-ti-coat. My ain kind dow. The 





wind blaws cauld, my claithing's thin^ O dearie, on me rue, And 


hap me wi' thy petticoat. My ain kind dow. 

The reader will, from this example, be enabled to form a 
pretty accurate notion respecting the intrinsic value of those 
modern refinements which have been made on several of the 
old Scottish melodies, by comparing the above air with that 
which is inserted in the Museum and other recent publica- 

The song, which is adapted to the tune beginning Bell^ 
thy looks have MlPd my hearty was written by Ramsay, and 
pubhshed in the Orpheus Caledonius in 1725 ; but it is 
certainly the most stupid song Ramsay ever wrote. To work 
the silly burden of a nurse's lullaby to her infant, into a 
grave song for a full-grown lover, seems really too absurd, 
unless he held the same opinion, that 


Old Drydeii did, and he was wond'rous wise, 
3fen are but children of a larger size ! 


This air is also very ancient, and has even been a favour- 
ite in England for several generations, some of their old songs 
being adapted to it. The verses in the Museum, beginning 
" Cauld blaws the wind frae east to west," were written by 

Sir John Hawkins, in his History of Music, vol iv. relates 
the following anecdote respecting this tune, which happened 
in 1691, during the reign of Wilham and Mary. " The 
Queen having a mind one afternoon to be entertained with 
music, sent Mr Gostling to Henry Purcell and Mrs Ara- 
bella Hunt, who had a very fine voice and an admirable 
hand on the lute, with a request to attend her ; they obeyed 
her commands, Mr Gostling and Mrs Hunt sung several 
compositions of Purcell, who accompanied them on the 
harpsichord. At length, the Queen beginning to grow tired, 
asked Mrs Hunt if she could not sing the old Scots ballad 
of " Cold and Raw T"* Mrs Hunt answered, Yes; and sung 
it to her lute. Purcell was all the while sitting at the harpsi- 
chord unemployed, and not a little nettled at the Queen''s 
preference of a vulgar ballad to his music ; but, seeing her 
Majesty delighted with this tune, he determined that she 
should hear it upon another occasion ; and accordingly in 
the next birth-day song, viz. that for the year 1 692, he com- 
posed an air to the words May her bright example chace 
vice in troops out of the land ; the bass whereof is the tune 
to Cold and Raw ; it is printed in the second part of the 
Orpheus Britannicus, and is note for note the same with the 
Scots tune." 

As Purcell's Orpheus Britannicus is not a work to be met 
with in every family, and indeed is now becoming scarce, it 
is presumed, that the birth-day song, to which Sir John 



Hawkins alludes, will not be unacceptable to the musical 
reader. It is here given exactly as it is printed in the 151st 
page of the second volume of the Orpheus Britannicus, pub- 
lished by Henry Playford in 1702. 



— p__3::^ — r^ir^ ^ ^^ 




May her blest ex - am - pie chase Vice in troops out 

'T¥.-h^ ^ r 

—z m — 9 — 

^- ."cJ •--• 


-P-Z— --- 



p — ^ 





of the land. Fly - ing from her aw - ful face^ Like 

trembling ghosts, Mhen daj^'s at hand. May her he-ro 




(^ 4- 




bring us peace, Won with ho - nour in the field, 





g=z:K: izp — ^ -P— ^ 



And our homebred factions cease. He still our sword, and 

■&^^ ^^^^^^^^^ f 


she our shield. 


Purcell, however, must have borrowed the Idea of adapt- 
ing the old air as a bass part for his song from John Hihon, 
who introduced the same tune into his " Northern Catch" for 
three voices, beginning " I'se gae with thee, my sweet Peggy," 
printed in 1652. In this humorous catch, the tune of " Up 
in the Morning early" is adapted for the third voice. This 
tune was selected by Mr Gay for one of the songs in the 
Beggar's Opera, beginning " If any wench Venus' girdle 
wear," acted in 1728. 


This elegant and affecting elegy, " Mourn hapless Cale- 
donia, mourn !" was written by Tobias Smollet, Esq. M.D. 
the celebrated historian, poet, and physician, about the year 
1746. The tune to which it was originally adapted, is that 
in the Museum, which was composed by James Oswald, and 
published in his Caledonian Pocket Companion, No 4, p. 
14, with an asterism prefixed, to point out its being a melo- 
dy of his own composition. 

" Dr Blacklock," says Burns, «' told me that Smollet, who 
was at bottom a great Jacobite, composed these beautiful and 
pathetic verses on the infamous depredations of the Duke of 
Cumberland, after the battle of CuUoden." Reliques. 


This song was written by Robert Fergusson, the Scotti.<-h 
poet, Burns' older brother in misforiune, who died at Edin- 
burgh on the 16th of October, 1774, in the twenty-fifth year 
of his age. In the Museum, it is adapted to the fine old air 
of Cumbernauld-house, which is inserted both in Macgibbon 


and Oswald's Collections. The original song of Cumber- 
nauld-house has escaped every research of the editor. 


This song, beginning " Loud blaw the frosty breezes,'' 
was written in 1787 by Burns, and presented to Johnson for 
insertion in his Museum. The Highland rover alluded to 
was the young chevaUer, Prince Charles Edward Stuart. 
It is adapted to the Gaelic air, called " Morag," which is the 
Highland name for Marion. Burns also wrote the following 
verses to the same tune. 

TuKE, " Morag." 

O WHA is she that loes me. 

And has my heart a keeping ? 
sweet is she that loes me^ 

As dews o' simmer weeping. 

In tears the rose-buds steeping. 


O that's the lassie o' my heart. 

My lassie ever dearer ; 
O that's the queen o ivomankind. 

And ne'er a ane to peer her. 

If thou shalt meet a lassie. 

In grace and beauty charming. 
That e'en thy chosen lassie, 

Erewhile thy breast sae warming. 

Had ne'er sic powers alarming, 

O that's the lassie, S^c. 

If thou had'st heard her talking, 

And thy attentions plighted. 
That ilka body talking 

But her by thee is slighted ; 

And thou art all delighted. 

O that's the lassie, S^c. 

If thou hast met this fair one. 

When frae her thou hast parted. 
If every other fair one 

But her, thou hast deserted. 

And thou art broken-hearted. 

O that's the lassie, ^c. 



Dr Currie, in his life of Burns, says, that our poet also 
composed the following poem of Castle Gordon in September 
1 787, to be sung to Morag, a Highland air of which he was 
extremely fond, in testimony of his gratitude for the kind 
reception he had met with from the Duke and Duchess, at 
the hospitable mansion of this noble family. 

Streams that glide in orient plains. 
Never bound by winter's chains ; 
Glowing here on golden sands. 
There commix'd with foulest stains 
From tyranny's empurpled bands : 
These, their richly-gleaming waves, 
I leave to tyrants and their slaves ; 
Give me the stream that sweetly leaves 
The banks by Castle Gordon. 

Spicy forests, ever gay. 
Shading from the burning ray 
Hapless wretches sold to toil. 
Or the ruthless native's way. 
Bent on slaughter, blood, and spoil : 
Woods that ever verdant wave, 
I leave the tyrant and the slave ; 
Give me the groves that lofty brave 
The storms, by Castle Gordon. 

Wildly here, without control. 
Nature reigns and rules the whole ; 
In that sober pensive mood. 
Dearest to the feeling soul. 
She plants the forest, pours the flood ; 
Life's poor day I'll musing rave. 
And find at night a sheltering cave. 
Where waters flow and wild woods wave. 
By bonny Castle Gordon. 

These verses are certainly very fine, but the reader will 
easily perceive that they do not correspond with the air of 
Morag. The measure and accentuation are totally different 
from the stanzas which our poet composed for the tune in 
Johnson's Museum, and these points he seldom, if ever, 
overlooked. We may therefore conclude, that Dr Currie 
has been led into a mistake with regard to the tune, though 
the verses undoubtedly are well deserving of being united to 
a very fine one. 


In Eraser's Gaelic Airs, lately published, is another set of 
" Morag," in which the sharp seventh is twice introduced 
in place of the perfect fifth, alongst with a variety of notes, 
graces, and a retardando, not to be found in any of the 
older sets of this air, and which indeed are equally super- 
fluous as well as foreign to the genuine spirit of ancient Gaelic 
melodies. Publishers of national tunes should be scrupul- 
ously careful in giving nothing but the original and unso- 
phisticated melody, for every person who knows any thing 
of the science, can make whatever extempore variations he 
pleases on the simple intervals. The French have been 
justly censured for this absurd practice by Quantz, the cele- 
brated music-master of Frederic the Great, King of Prussia. 
Tbe Italians, on the other hand, are commended by that 
eminent musician, for leaving the embellishments and graces 
entirely to the judgment, taste, and feeling of the performers. 
In this way, the genuine text of the melody is preserved, 
and the performer is left at liberty to use what variations 
his taste and judgment may suggest, without rendering the 
subject dull and insipid, as if it was immutably fixed on the 
barrel of a street-organ. 

This cheerful old air is inserted in Mrs Crockat's Collec- 
tion in 1709, and was, in former times, frequently played 
as a single hornpipe in the dancing-schools of Scotland. 
The verses to which it is adapted in the Museum, begin- 
ning " Hey the dusty miller, and his dusty coat," are a 
fragment of the old ballad, with a few verbal alterations by 


Ramsay adapted one of his songs in the Gentle Shepherd 
to this old Scotch melody, which was formerly called " How 
can I be sad on my wedding-day." The old song begins 

How can I be sad, when a husband I hae.^ 
How can I be sad on my wedding-day ? 


The verses in the Museum, beginning " One night as 
young Colin lay musing in bed," were composed by Dr 
Thomas Blacklock. 


This song was written by Bums when he was only seven- 
teen years old, and it is among the earliest of his printed 
compositions. It is adapted to a beautiful and plaintive air, 
harmonized by Mr Stephen Clarke. 

This is a fragment of an Ode, written by Alexander Ro- 
bertson of Struan, addressed to a friend who was going to 
sea. It was published among his other poems at Edinburgh 
after the author*'s decease. In the Museum, the verses are 
adapted to the air of The Lovely Lass of Monorgan, taken 
from Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion. 

This very humorous old song is generally, though erro- 
neously, attributed to Ramsay by his biographers. Ramsay, 
indeed, did make some verbal alterations upon it ; but Wil- 
liam Thomson felt no scruple in presenting it, in its original 
rustic garb, to a queen of Great Britain, so late as the year 
1725. As Ramsay has frequently been censured for sup- 
pressing the ancient songs, and substituting his own inferior 
productions in their stead, it seems but fair, in justice to his 
memory, to give the reader an opportunity, by inserting the 
old words here, of judging whether, or how far, such censure 
is really just. 

A COCK laird fu cadgie, 
Wi' Jenny did meet. 
He haws'd her, and kiss'd her. 
And ca'd her his sweet. 

Gin thou'lt gae alang wi' me, 

Jenny, quo he, 
Thou'se be my ain leman 
Jo Jenny, Jenny, 

138 cxLviir.— A COCK laird, fu' cadgie. 


Gin I gae alang w'l you. 
Ye manna fail 
To feed me wi' crowdie. 
And good hackit kail. 

What needs a this vanity, 

Jenny ? quo he; 
Are na bannocks and dribly beards 
Good meat for thee ? 

Gin I gae alang wi' you, 
I maun hae a sUk hood, 
A kirtle-sark, wylie-coat. 
And a silk snood. 
To tye up my hair in a 

Hout awa! ihou'st gane wud, I trow, 
Jenny, quo he. 


Gin you'd hae me look bonnie, 

And shine like the moon, 

I maun hae katlets, and pallets. 

And camrel-heel'd shoon. 

And craig-claithsj and lug-babs. 

And rings twa or three. 

Hout, the deil's in your vanity, 
Jenny, quo' he. 


Sometimes I am troubled 
Wi' gripes * * * 
Gin I get nae stoories, 
I may mysel shame ; 
I'll rift at the rumple, and 
Gar the wind flee. 

Deil stap a cork in your * * * * 
Jenny, quo he. 


Gin that be the care you tak. 
Ye may gae loup. 
For sican a hurcheon 
Shall ne'er skelp my — 
Howt awa, gae be hang'd, 
Lousie laddie, quo' she, 
Deil scoup o' your company, 
Jenny, quo' he. 

Though such broad-humoured verses were formerly 

thought nothing of, they would not now be tolerated in a 

drawing-room ; for times change, and we are changed with 




This very humorous song was composed by Burns, although 
he did not openly choose to avow it, I have recovered his 
original manuscript copy of the song, which is the same as 
that inserted in the Museum. It is adapted to the old tune 
of YoiCll aye he welcome bacJc again, which was the title of 
an old but very inferior song, both in point of wit and deli- 
cacy, to that in the Museum. This lively tune was inserted, 
about a century ago, in John Welsh's Caledonian Country 
DanceSi book ii. p. 45. It is also to be found in Oswald's 
Pocket Companion, and several other old collections. 


Written by Burns. 

There was a lass, they ca'd her Meg, 
And she held o'er the moor 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 ay she shook the temper-pin. 

As o'er the moor they lightly foor, 
A burn was clear, a glen was green. 
Upon the banks they eased their shanks. 
And ay she set the wheel between : 
But Duncan swoor a haly aith. 
That Meg should be a bride the morn ; 
Then Meg took up her spinning-graith. 
And flang them a' out o'er the burn. 

We will big a wee, wee house. 
And we will live like king and queen ; 
Sae blythe and merry's we will be. 
When ye set by the wheel at e'en. 
A naan may drink and no be drunk, 
A man may fight and no be slain, 
A man may kiss a bonny lass. 
And ay be welcome back again. 


Both the words and music of this ancient song appear in 
Forbes' Cantus, printed at Aberdeen in 1662, again in 1666, 



and lastly in 1682. We shall therefore present the reader with 
an exact copy of the melody, as it appears in these Collections, 
which will afford him another opportunity, by comparing 
it with the set in the Museum, and other modern collections, 
of observing what improvements have been made on this ear- 
ly melody. In the Aberdeen Cantus, the notes are lozenge- 
shaped semibreves, minums, and crotchets, without any bars. 
Here they are thrown into modern notation. 


^^=?Ff=f;^f^ff-r — hrr-r^-rFFffni^ 

^^j;=^=t=.-±=z — ^_ii:.___._„.4:_^_r:. 

Over the mountains, and un-der the caves, O-ver the 



fountains, and un-der the waves, O-ver wa-ters that are 





deepest, and which Neptune o-bey, O-ver rocks that are 


steepest, love will point out the way. 
The simple melody of this fine old song is scarce discern- 
ible amidst the superfluous extravagance of modern embel- 

The old title, says Burns, Sour Plums of Galashiels, was 
probably the beginning of a song to this air, which is now 
lost. The tune of Galashiels was composed about the be- 
ginning of last century, 1700, by the Laird of Galashiels' 
piper ; and Mr Cromek adds, that the piper of Galashiels 
was the subject of an unpublished mock heroic poem, by 
Hamilton of Bangour. — Reliques. Hamilton wrote the 
verses in the ]\Iuseum, and gave them to Ramsay, who pub- 
lished them in his Tca-Table Miscellany in 1725. This old 


tune also appears in Craig's Collection, printed in 1730, and 
in those of M'Gibbon and Oswald. Mr Watts published 
this song with the same tune in his Musical Miscellany, vol. 
iv. London, 1731. 


The words and music of this song were furnished by Dr 
Blacklock, for Johnson's Museum, about the close of 1787. 
Allan Masterton copied both for the Doctor. This song 
possesses merit, but some of the lines are a little deficient in 
measure, and the first part of the tune appears to have been 
incorrectly taken down. 


This song was written by Alexander Robertson of Struan, 
Esq. and published in an edition of his works at Edinburgh, 
sine anno. In the Museum, it is adapted to a very pretty 
air, called Benny Side, which is inserted in Oswald's Pocket 
Companion. The editor has not been able to procure a copy 
of the original song of Benny Side, Avhich may have been in 
fashion in the days of Oswald. 


This fine old tune is inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius 
in 1725, adapted to a long ballad written by Ramsay, be- 
ginning " As early I walk'd on the first of sweet May," 
which is likewise printed in his Tea-Table Miscellany. In 
the Museum, the air is adapted to a song of two stanzas, 
also written by Ramsay, beginning " O Sandy, why leaves 
thou thy Nelly to mourn ?" 

Dr Blacklock commvinicated to Mr Johnson a copy of the 
original verses to the same air, which are printed in the Mu- 
seum after those of Ramsay. 

It ought to be observed here, that this old melody con- 
sisted only of one strain, and it is so printed in Thomson's 
Orpheus Caledonius. The second strain, which is only a re- 

142 cLiv.— thro' the wood, laddie. 

petition of the first, an octave higher, was added by Adam 
Craig in 1730 ; but it could only be intended for instrumen- 
tal music. Few voices have a natural compass of more than 
twelve notes. When a tune exceeds this compass, the singer 
has recourse to thejhlsefto, which requires great skill and 
management to produce even a tolerable effect. It would be 
much better, therefore, to leave out the second strain alto- 
gether in singing this song, as the compass of the^r*^ is suf- 
ficiently extensive, and the tune quite long enough without 
any second part. 


This old elegiac ballad, beginning " I wish I were where 
Helen lies," was retouched by Burns for the Museum. 
Burns confessed, however, that his alterations were far from 
improving this ballad. 

Helen Irvine, a celebrated beauty of the sixteenth cen- 
tury, and daughter of the then Laird of Kirkconnel, in the 
county of Dumfries, was beloved by two gentlemen at the 
same time, who both resided in that neighbourhood. The 
name of the favourite suitor was Adam Fleming, that of the 
unsuccessful lover Bell of Blacket-house. The addresses of 
the latter, though seconded by the friends of the lady, being 
inflexibly rejected, he vowed to sacrifice Fleming to his re- 
sentment. Bent on this horrid design, he watched every op- 
portunity of carrying it into execution, and one evening, 
while the happy pair were sitting on a romantic spot washed 
by the river Kirtle, the desperate lover suddenly appeared on 
the opposite bank with a loaded musket, which he levelled at 
the breast of his rival. Helen, aware of his atrocious aim, 
instantly threw herself before the body of her lover, and, re- 
ceiving the mortal wound which was intended for him, fell 
back and died in his arms. The murderer fled beyond seas, 
but was closely pursued from place to place by Fleming, who 
at length overtook him in the vicinity of Madrid. A furious 
combat ensued, which terminated in the death of the fugitive 



assassin. Fleming, on his return, went to visit the grave of 
his beloved Helen in the church-yard of Kirkconnel, and 
stretching himself upon it, he expired, breathing her name 
with his last sigh. His remains were interred by her side. 
The grave of the lovers is still pointed out, and on the tomb- 
stone the inscription Hie jacet Adamus Fleming, is yet le- 
gible. A sword and a cross are sculptured on the stone, 
which the peasantry tell you represents the gun that shot 
Helen, and the sword that killed her murderer. A heap of 
stones is raised on the spot where the murder was committed, 
as a lasting monument of the abhorrence which fair Helen's 
contemporaries felt for the bloody deed. 

There are various editions of this ballad in Pinkerton''s 
Scottish Poems, Sir Walter Scotf s Border Minstrelsy, Rit- 
son's Scottish Songs, and other collections, but they all differ 
more or less from one another, and the several airs to which 
the words have been adapted are also dissimilar. All of 
them are evidently modern, and totally different from the 
simple and plaintive little air to which the editor has always 
heard the ballad sung in the south of Scotland. He there- 
fore inserts it without further apology. 


fe 4f-4r-g ^^^^Pi 

I WISH I were where Helen lies. For night and day on 

itb-^—^ p • r--rT~f^~~p~~^ 1 — p--f-^ 

^i_L_| ,_-p ___.A-_J^^__.1_Ll. 

me she cries; O that I were where Helen lies, On fair Kirk- 




connel lee! 

O Helen ! lovely, chaste and fair, 
A ringlet o' thy gowden hair 
In my fond bosom I will wear. 
Until the day I die. 


I curst the heart that form'd the thought, 
I curst the hand that fir'd the shot. 
When in these arms my Helen dropt. 
And died to shelter me. 

Ye weel may think my heart was sair. 
When down she sank and spak nae mair. 
And I beheld my lovely fair 

Stretch'd on Kirkconnel lee. 

To foreign climes the traitor fled, 
But quickly after him I sped ; 
Ere lang beneath my glaive he bled, 
For her that died for me. 

I wish my grave were growing green. 
When Kirtle rows sae smooth and sheen. 
And close by Helen's might be seen 
On fair Kirkconnel lee. 

Helen fair ! O Helen chaste ! 
Were I wi' thee I wad be blest. 
For thou liest lowly and at rest 

On fair Kirkconnel lee. 

Where Helen lies ! Where Helen lies ! 
For night and day on me she cries ! 

1 wish I were where Helen lies. 

Who died for love of me. 

Some of the peasantry allege, that Fleming was killed by 

an arrow in place of a bullet. In the following passage from 

a poem, written by Thomas Poyton, a pauper, after he had 

read Drummond of Hawthornden's history of Scotland, 

printed in the Gentlemen's Magazine for July 1783, this 

branch of the traditional story is evidently alluded to. 

T'other day as she work'd at her wheel. 
She sang of fair Eleanor's fate. 
Who fell by stern jealousy's steel. 
As on Kirtle's smooth margin she sate. 

Her lover to shield from the dart. 
Most eagerly she interpos'd ; 
The arrow traiispierc'd her fond heart. 
The fair in his arms her eyes clos'd. 

O Fleming, how wretched thy doom. 
Thy love to see wounded to death ; 
No wonder that, stretch'd on her tomb. 
In grief thou surrender'st thy breath. 


Yet one consolation was thine. 
To soften fate's rigid decree. 
Thy mistress her life did resign, 
A martyr to love and to thee. 


ThI3 humorous song, as well as that which follows it 
in the Museum, beginning " A' the lads of Thornie Bank," 
were composed by Burns towards the end of the year 1787. 
They are adapted to the old tune, called The Ruffimis Rant., 
which is likewise the melody of " Roy's Wife of Aldivalloch." 

In November 1794, Burns also composed the following- 
stanzas to the same tune, in the character of a forsaken lover''s 
address to his mistress. 


Chorus to be sung to the first strahi of the tune. 
Canst thou leave me thus, my Katy ? 
Canst thou leave me thus, my Katy ? 
Well thou know'st viy aching hea?-t, 
And canst thou leave me thMS,for pity ? 

Is this thy plighted, fond regard. 
Thus cruelly to part, my Katy ? 
Is this thy faithful swahi's reward. 
An aching, broken heart, my Katy ? 
Canst thou leave me, &c. 

Farewell ! may no such sorrows tear 
That fickle heart of thine, my Katy ! 
Thou may'st find those will love thee dear, 
But not a love like mine, my Katy. 
Canst thou leave me, &c. 

The following reply from the lady, evidently the hand- 
writing of a female, was found among the manuscripts of our 
bard after his decease. 


Stay, my Willie, yet believe me ; 

Stay, my Willie, yet believe me ; 

For ah ! thou knoiu'st na every pang 

Wad ivring my bosom shouldst tho%i leave me. 

Tell me that thou yet art true. 
And a' my wrangs shall be forgiven. 


And whan this heart proves fause to thee. 
Yon sun shall cease its course in heaven. 
Stay, my Willie, <kc. 

But to think I was betray 'd. 

That falsehood e'er our loves should sunder J 

To take the flow'ret to my breast. 

And find the guilefii' serpent under. 

Stay, my Willie, &c, ■ 

Could I hope thou'dst ne'er deceive. 
Celestial pleasures might I choose 'em, 
I'd slight, nor seek in other spheres 
That heaven I'd find within thy bosom. 

Stay, my Willie, &c. 

Dr Currie observes, *'- It may amuse the reader to be told, 
that on this occasion the gentleman and the lady have ex- 
changed the dialects of their respective countries. The Scot- 
tish bard makes his address in pure English : the reply on 
the part of the lady, in tlie Scottish dialect, is, if we mistake 
not, by a young and beautiful Englishwoman,'^' vol iv. letter 


This song was written by Burns in August 1787, and 
adapted to a Gaelic melody, entitled " Banarach Donnach 
B-uidh,"or " The Brown Dairy-maid." Burns himself gives 
us the following account of this song : " These verses were 
composed on a charming girl. Miss Charlotte Hamilton, who 
is nov/ married to James M'Kitrick Adair, Esq. physician. 
She is sister to my worthy friend, Gavin Hamilton of Mauch- 
line, and was born on the Banks of Ayr ; but was, at the 
time I wrote these lines, residing at Harveyston in Clack- 
mannanshire, on the romantic banks of the little river De- 
von. — I first heard the air from a lady in Inverness, and got 
the notes taken down for this work (the Museum)." 

In a letter to Dr Currie, printed in the life of Burns, Dr 
Adam, now of Harrowgate, says, " Burns and I left Edin- 
burgh together in August 1787. We rode by Linlithgow 
and Falkirk to Stirling. From Stirling we went next morn- 
ing; through the I'omantic and fertile vale of Devon to Har- 


vieston in Clackmannanshire, then inhabited by Mrs Ha- 
milton, with the younger part of whose family Burns had 
been previously acquainted. He introduced me to the fa- 
mily, and there was formed my first acquaintance with Mrs 
Hamilton's eldest daughter, to whonv I have been married 
for nine years. Thus was I indebted to Burns for a con- 
nexion, from which I have derived, and expect further to de- 
rive, much happiness." 

The author of Albyn's Anthology, printed in 1816, and 
the editor of the late Collection of Highland Airs, have each 
obliged us with a set of this tune, as if it had never been be- 
fore published. These airs differ considerably from one ano- 
ther; but the set in Johnson's Museum, which Burns ob- 
tained from the lady in Inverness, is by far the best of the 


Both the words and air of this song, beginning " O waly ! 
waly ! up yon bank," are very ancient. In Mr Blackwood's 
MSS. which were transcribed by Thomas Wode In 1566, 
from a still more ancient church-music book, compiled by 
Dean John Angus, Andrew Blackball, minister of Mussel- 
burgh, and others, there is an humorous Yule or Christmas 
medley, in which the last four lines of the first stanza of this 
old song are evidently burlesqued. 

In the first stanza we have the following lines : 

O WALY ! waly ! love is bonnie, 
A little while, M'hen it is new ; 
But when it's auld it waxes cauld. 
And wears away like morning dew. 

The lines in the old manuscript run thus. 

Hey, trollie, lollie, love is jolly, 
A quhile, qvihill it is new ; 
Quhen it is old it grows full cold, 
Wae worth the love untrew. 

There can be no doubt, therefore, that this song is at least 

coeval with the reign of Mary Queen of Scots, if not earlier. 

Burns mentions, that he has heard a different edition of 


the second stanza. Instead of the four lines, beginning with 
" When cockle shells," &c. the other way ran thus, 

O wHEiiEFORE need I busk my head? 
Or wherefore need I kame my hair ? 
Sin my fause luve has me forsook. 
And says he'll never luve me mair. 

Arthur^'s Seat and St Anton's, or rather, St Anthony's 
Well, alluded to in the song, are both in the immediate vici- 
nity of Edinburgh, and so well known as to require no parti- 
cular description. 


Ramsay published this as an old song in his Tea-Table 
Miscellany, ITS^. I have heard it attributed to Sir Gilbert 
Elliot of Minto, Bart, but have been unable to discover upon 
what authority. The verses are pretty, and characteristic 
of rural innocence and love. 


It is generally reported, that this lively air was composed 
by Duncan Gray, a carter or carman in Glasgow, about the 
beginning of last century, and that the tune Avas taken down 
from his whistling it two or three times to a musician in that 
city. It is inserted both in Macgibbon and Oswald's Collec- 

The comic verses to which it is united in the Museum, be- 
ginning " Wearie fa you, Duncan Gray — Ha, ha, the gir- 
din o't," are taken from the old song, with considerable alte- 
rations, by Burns. Our poet, however, wrote another ex- 
ceedingly humorous song to the same tune in December 
1792, which is here subjoined. 

Duncan Gray cam here to woo^ 

Ha, ha, the wooing o't. 
On blythe yule-night, when we were fou. 

Ha, ha, the wooing o't. 
Maggie coost her head fu' high, 
Look'd asklent and unco skeigh, 
Gart poor Duncan stand abeigh ; 

Ha, ha, the wooing o't. 

CLX. DtraCAN GRAY. 149 

Duncan fleech'd and Duncan pray'd. 

Ha, ha, tlie wooing dt, 
Meg was deaf as Ailsa Craig,* 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Duncan sigh'd baith out and in, 
Grat his een baith bleer'd and blin', 
Spak o' low pin' o'er a linn ; 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Time and chance are but a tide. 

Ha, fui, &c. 
Slighted love is sair to bide, 

Ha, ha. Sic. 
Shall I, like a fool, quo' he, 
For a haughty hizzie die ? 
She may gae to — France for me ! 

Ha, ha, &c. 

How it comes let doctors tell. 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Meg grew sick as he grew well. 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Something in her bosom wrings. 
For relief a sigh she brings ; 
And O, her een, they spak sic things ! 

Ha, ha, &c. 

Duncan was a lad o' grace. 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Maggie's was a piteous case. 

Ha, ha, &c. 
Duncan could na be her death. 
Swelling pity smoor'd his wrath ; 
Now they're crouse and canty baith. 

Ha, ha, the tuooing o't. 

Burns, in a letter to Mr George Thomson, dated 4th De- 
cember 1792, says, " The foregoing I submit, my dear Sir, 
to your better judgment. Acquit them or condemn them, 
as seemeth good in your sight. Duncan Gray is that kind of 
hght-horse gallop of an air which precludes sentiment. iMie 
ludicrous is its ruling feature.*" 


This sone is inserted in the second edition of Thomson's 


* A well known rock in the Fiitli of Clyde, betwixt the shores of Ayrshire and 
Kintyre. It is about two miles in circumference, and rises to a great licight. It 
is the property of the Earl of Cassillis. 


Orpheus Caledonius, published in 1733. It also appeared 
in Daniel Wright's Miscellany for December 1733, under 
the title of " Dumbarton Drums, never before printed to 
music." The words were inserted in the Tea-Table Miscel- 
lany in 1724, but the author is unknown. Burns says, that 
'* this is the last of the West Highland airs ; and from it, 
over the whole tract of country to the confines of Tweedside, 
there is hardly a tune or song that one can say has taken its 
origin from any place or transaction in that part of Scotland. 
The oldest Ayrshire reel is Stewarton Lasses^ which was 
made by the father of the present Sir Walter Montgomery 
Cunningham, alias Lord Lyle; since which period there has 
indeed been local music in that country in great plenty. 
Johnny Faa is the only old song Avhich I could ever trace as 
belonging to the county of Ayr." — Reliques. 


This beautiful air does not appear in any of our old collec- 
tions, by Thomson, Craig, M' Gibbon, or Oswald. It seems 
to have been modelled from the ancient tune, in triple time, 
called The Sleepy Body, like that of another from the same 
source, called The Ploughman. See No 165. For upwards 
of half a century, however, few, if any of our tunes, have 
been greater favourites with the poets than that of " Cauld 
Kail in Aberdeen." Although this air, particularly when 
played slow, is rather of a tender and plaintive cast, yet most 
of the songs that have been adapted to it are of a very op- 
posite description. The oldest song to this time that I 
have met with is the following. The author is anonymous, 
but the song was collected by Herd, and printed in his se- 
cond volume in 1776 ; but he told me it Avas much older. 

Cauld kale in Aberdeen, 

And castocks in Strabogie, 

But yet I fear they'll cook o'er soonj 

And never warm the coc-je. 



The lasses about Bogie* gicht 

Their limbs, they are sae clean and tight. 

That if they were but girded right. 

They'll dance the reel of Bogie. 

Wow, Aberdeen, what did you mean, 

Sae young a maid to woo, sir ? 

I'm sure it was nae joke to her, 

Whate'er it was to you, sir ; ' 

For lasses now are no sae blate 

But they ken auld folk's out o' date. 

And better playfare can they get 

Than castocks in Strabogie. 
The following song, to the same tune, is likewise by an ano- 
nymous author, but it is still more modern. It was printed 
in Dale's Scottish Songs, and is alluded to by Burns as Ijeing 

an old song. 

There's cauld kail in Aberdeen, 
And castocks in Strabogie, 
Where ilka lad maun hae his lass. 
But I maun hae my cogie. 
For I maun hae my cogie, sirs, 
I canna want my cogie, 
1 wadna gie my three-gir'd cog 
For a' the queans in Bogie. 
There's Johnnie Smith has got a wife 
Wha scrimps him o' his cogie ; 
If she were mine, upon my life, 
I'd -douk her in a bogie. 

For I maun hae my cogie, sirs, 

I canna want my cogie ; 

I wadna gie my three-gir'd cog 

For a' the queans in Bogie. 
Twa-three todlin weans they hae. 
The pride o' a' Strabogie ; 
Whene'er the toturas cry for meat 
She curses ay his cogie. 

O wae betide the three-gir'd cog ! 

O wae betide the cogie. 

It does mair skaith than a the ills 

That happen in Strabogie. 

" The Bogie, celebrated by so many bards, is a river in Aberdeenshire. II 
rises in the parish of Auchindoir, and, after running through an extensive, rich, 
and beautiful strath or valley, called Strathbogie, formerly one of the great divi- 
sions of that county, falls into the river Dcveron, a little below the town of Huntly. 


She fand him ance at Willie Sharp's^, 
And what they maist did laugh at. 
She brak the bicker, spilt the drink. 
And tightly gowfF'd his hafFet. 

wae betide the three-gir'd cog, 

wae betide the cogie. 

It does mair skaith than a' the ills 
That happen in Strabogie, 


Yet here's to ilka honest chiel 
Wha drinks wi' me a cogie ; 
As for ilk silly whingin fool. 
We'll douk him in a bogie. 

For I maun hae my cogie,' sirs, 

1 canna want my cogie ; 

I wadna gie my three-gir'd cog 
For a' the queans in Bogie. 

The authors of the two foregoing excellent and humorous 
ballads, though the editor has not been able to discover them, 
must certainly be Avell known among the circle of their own 
friends. The present Duke qf Gordon likewise wrote a very 
fine song to the same air, and as Johnson preferred his 
Grace's song to both its predecessors, he placed it in his Mu- 
sical Museum. Since that period Mr William Reid of Glas- 
gow, bookseller, has favoured us with the following verses to 
the same tune, with which we shall conclude the present ar- 

There's cauld kail in Aberdeen, 

And bannocks in Strabogie, 

But naething driv^es awa the sjileen 

Sae Aveel's a social cogie. 

That mortal's life nae pleasure shares 

Wha broods o'er a' that's fogie : 

Whene'er I'm fasht wi warldly cares 

I drown them in a cogie. 

Thus merrily my time I pass. 

With spirits brisk and vogie. 

Blest wi' my buiks and my sweet lass. 

My cronies and my cogie. 

Then haste and gie's an old Scots sang 

Sic like as Kathrine Ogie ; 

A gude auld sang comes never wrang. 

When o'er a social co.iiie. 

153 r 


This soug was composed by Dr Avxstin, physician in Edin- 
burgh, who had courted Miss Jean Drummond of Megg- 
inch, and to whom he was shortly to have been married. 
But James, Duke of Atholl, having seen her, became so much 
enamoured, that he made proposals of marriage, which were 
accepted ; and, as Burns says, she jilted the Doctor. This 
lady having survived her first husband, married the late 
Lord Adam Gordon, uncle to Alexander, the present Duke 
of Gordon. 

Dr Austin adapted his words to the tune of an old song, 
which has a similar beginning, called " For the Lak of Gold 
I lost her, O ;" the melody of which is inserted in Oswald's 
Pocket Companion, No iii. p. 2. There are several passages 
in th^ tune, however, the very same as in that called, " I love 
my Love in Secret." 

The Doctor, in his song says, " No cruel fair shall ever 
move my injured heart agaiyi to love ,•" but lie afterwards 
married, and had a fine family of children. 


This fine old Scottish song, beginning " As I went furth 
to view the plain,"" was introduced, and sung by Mr John 
Abell, a gentleman of the Chapel-]-{oyal, at his concert in 
Stationers'-hall, London, in the year 1680, with great ap- 
plause. It was also printed with the music and words, by an 
engraver of the name of Cross, as a single sheet song, in the 
course of that year, a copy of which is now lying before me. 
About twenty years after this period two editions of the tune 
made their appearance in the " Pills," one of which was an 
inaccurate reprint to the song as sung by Abell, which was 
now called " A new Scotch Song." The other was called 
" Cathrin Loggie," where the tune is adapted to very inde- 
licate verses. The English transcriber, from not understand- 
ing the Scottish idioms and orthography, had fallen into a 


few verbal errors ; but Ramsay, in correcting these for his 

Tea-Table Miscellany, used some liberties with the text 

that were not altogether warranted. A correct copy of the 
old verses is therefore annexed. 

As I went furth to view the plain 
Upon a morning early. 
With May's sweet scent to cheer my brain. 
When flow'rs grew fresh and fairly ; 
A very pretty maid I spy'd. 
She shin'd tho' it was fogie ; 
I ask'd her name ; sweet sir, she sigli'd. 
My name is Kathrine Ogie. 

1 paus'd a while, and did admire. 
To see a nymph so stately ; 
So brisk an air there did appear 
In a country maid so neatly : 
Such native sweetness she display 'd, , 

Like lilies in a bogie ; 
Diana's self was ne'er array'd. 
As this same Kathrine Ogie. 

Thou flow'r of females, beauty's queen, 
Who sees and does not prize thee ; 
Tho' thou are drest in robes but mean. 
Yet they cannot disguise thee : 
Thy mind sure as thine eyes do look 
Above a clownish rogie ; 
Thou art a match for laird or duke. 
My bonnie Kathrine Ogie. 


! if I were some shepherd swain. 
To feed my flocks beside thee. 
And gang with thee alang the plain. 
At boughting to abide thee : 
More rich and happy I could be 
With Kate, and crook, and dogie, 
Than he that does his thousands see — 
My winsome Kathrine Ogie. 


Then I'd despise imperial crowns. 
And statesmen's dangerous stations ; 
Nor fear a Monarch's slights or frowns, 
And laugh at conqu'ring nations ; 



Might I caress and still possess 
The lass of whom I'm vogie. 
These were but toys, I must confess, 
Compar'd wi' Kathrine Ogie. 


The/ates, I fear, have not ordain'd 

For me so fair a creature. 

Whose lovely face makes her esteem'd, 

A miracle of nature. 

Clouds of despair surround my love. 

That are both dark and fogie ; 

pity me ye powers above, 

1 die for Kathrine Ogie ! 

Mr Abell, who used to sing this, and many other Scottish 
songs, to his royal master Charles II., was celebrated for a 
fine counter-tenor voice, and for his skill in playing the lute. 
" The king," says one of his biographers, " admiring his sing- 
ing, had formed a resolution of sending him and another 
English musician to the carnival at Venice, in order to shew 
the ItaUans that there were good voices in England." But as 
the person intended to accompany him expressed an unwilling- 
ness to take the journey, the king desisted from his purpose. 
Abell continued in the chapel till the revolution in 1688, 
when he was discharged on account of his adherence to the 
Romish Communion. After this he went abroad, and 
greatly distinguished himself by singing in public in several 
of the towns of Germany. In some of these his receipts 
were enormously great ; but, having little foresight, he lived 
profusely, and entered into all the expences of a man of qua- 
lity. At intervals he was often so much reduced, as to be 
under the necessity of travelling through whole provinces 
with his lute slung at his back, subject to all the hardships 
and miseries of a strolling musician. In his rambles, he got 
as far as Poland ; and, on his arrival at Warsaw, the king 
sent for him to the court. Abell made some excuse to avoid 
going ; but, on being told that he had every thing to fear 
from the king's resentment, he apologised for his behaviour, 
and received a command to attend the king the next day. 
On his arrival at the palace, he was seated in a chair in the 


middle of a spacious hall, and immediately drawn up to a 
great height. Soon afterwards the king and his attendants 
appeared in a gallery opposite to him, and at the same time 
a number of bears were let loose below. The king gave him 
the choice, whether he would sing or be lowered among the 
bears. Abell chose the former, and he declared afterwards, 
that he never sang so well in his life as he did in his cage- 
Having rambled about for many years, he return- 
ed to England in 1701, and published, in London, a 
Collection of Songs in several languages, with a dedication 
to King William, in which he expressed a grateful sense of 
his Majesty's favours abroad, but in particular of his cle- 
mency in permitting him to return to his native country. Mr 
Abell died about the year 1702. 

William Thomson published the song of Kathrine Ogie, 
with Ramsay "'s alterations, in his Orpheus Caledonius, along 
with the music, in 1725. The tune appears in Adam Craig's 
Select Collection of Genuine Scottish Airs, in 1730. Both 
the words and music appeared in the second volume of Watts' 
Musical Miscellany, in 1729- Gay selected this tune for one 
of his songs in Polly, beginning " We never biame the for- 
ward swain,"" printed, but not acted, in 1729- Burns had not 
a favourable opinion of the song. In a letter to Mr Thom- 
son, dated 14th November, 1792, he says, " I agree with 
you, that the song Kathrine Ogie is very poor stuff, and al- 
together unworthy of so beautiful an air. I tried to mend it, 
but the awkward sound Ogie recurring so often in the rhyme, 
spoils every attempt at introducing sentiment into the piece." 
The poet therefore wrote a new song for this tune, the theme 
of which was his favourite Highland Mary. — See remarks 
on the song, No 117. In the same letter to Mr Thom- 
son, enclosing this new song, Burns says, " It pleases my- 
self. I think it is in my happiest manner. You will see at 
first glance that it suits the air. The subject of the song is 
one of the most interesting passages of my youthful days, and 
I own, that I should be much flattered to see the verses set 


to an air which would ensure celebrity. Perhaps, after all, 
'tis the still glowing prejudice of my heart that throws a bor- 
rowed lustre over the merits of the composition." 


By Burns. To the tune of Kathrine Ogic. 
Ye banks, and braes, and streams, around 

The castle o' Montgomery, 
Green be your woods, and fair your flowers. 

Your waters never drumlie ! 
There shumer first unfauld her robes. 

And there the langest tarry ; 
For there I took the last fareweel 

my sweet Highland Mary. 

How sweetly bloom'd the gay-green birk ! 

How rich the hawthorn's blossom ! 
As underneath the fragrant shade 

1 clasp'd her to my bosom ! 
The golden hours on angel wings 

Flew o'er me and my dearie ; 
For dear to me as light and life 

Was my sweet Highland Mary. 
Wi' mony a vow and lock'd embrace, 

Our parting was fu' tender ; 
And, pledging aft to meet again. 

We tore oursels asunder ; 
But, oh ! fell death's untimely frost. 

That nipt my flower so early ! 
Now green's the sod, and cauld's the clay, 

That wraps my Highland Mary ! 

O pale, pale now, those rosy lips 

I aft hae kiss'd sae fondly ! 
And closed for ay the sparkling glance 

That dwelt on me sae kindly ! 
And mouldering now in silent dust. 

That heart that lo'ed me dearly ! 
But still within my bosom's core 

Shall live my Highland Mary. 

In the foregoing song, Burns has evidently imitated some 
of those poets of the " olden time," who Avere more solicitous 
about strength of sentiment than accuracy of rhyme. 


This pretty little tune, in common time, consists only of 
one strain, like that of the original melody, in triple time. 



called " Sleepy Body," from which it was evidently taken. A 
very poor set of it is printed in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, where it is loaded with variations. The following 
set of the tune is taken from an old manuscript penes the 


-P P i -. -> 

The tune repeated for the chorus. 
The humorous song in the Museum, beginning " The 
Ploughman he's a bonny lad," is partly old and partly the 
composition of Burns ; the three last verses, indeed, were 
wholly written by him. The last verse, however, should be 
deleted in future editions, as it conveys a double meaning, 
and destroys the effect of a song which in every other respect is 
veryfineand unexceptionable. This was one of those^K' things 
which Burns hinted to Johnson might be amended if the work 
were to begin again. The melody, too, in the Museum, is not 
quite genuine- The leap from A to the ninth note below, 
viz. G in the third bar of the first and second strains, is in- 
tolerable in vocal music. The old song is here annexed. It 
is taken from the second volume of Herd's Collection. 


Old verses. 
The Ploughman he's a bonny lad. 

And a' his wark's at leisure. 
And when that he comes hame at e'en 
He kisses me wd' pleasure. 

Up ivi't now, my Ploughman lad, 
Up wi't noiu, viy Ploughman ; 
Of a' the lads that !< do sec, 

Commend me to the Ploughman. 

Now the blooming spring comes on. 

He takes his yokhig early. 
And, whistling o'er the furrow'd land. 

He goes to fallow clearly. 

'■ Up wi't now, ^x. 


Whan my Ploughman comes hame at e'en 

He's oft wet and wearie ; 
Cast afF the wet, put on the dry. 
And gae to bed my deary. 
Up ivi't notv, S;c. 
I will wash my Ploughman's hose. 

And I will wash his o'erlay. 
And I will make my Ploughman's bed. 
And cheer him late and early. 
Merry but, and merry hen, 

JMerry is my Ploughman; 
Of a' the trades that I do ken 
Commend me to the Plough?nan. 
Plough yon hill and plough yon dale. 

Plough yon faugh and fallow. 
Who winna drink the Ploughman's health 
Is but a dirty fellow. 
Merry but, S^c. 


This song was written by DrBlacklock expressly for the Mu- 
seum. The verses are adapted to an ancient air, called "Here's 
a Health to my true Love, wherever he be ;" which tradition 
reports to have been a composition of our gallant Scottish mo- 
narch, James IV., who fell with the " Flowers of the Fo- 
rest," on Flodden Field, in 1 513. Ritson says, " One would be 
triad, however, of some better, or at least some earlier autho- 
rity, as Scottish traditions are to be received with great cau- 
tion.'' Every traditional story, of whatever nation, ought to 
be received with caution, particularly when it is inconsistent 
with common probability. That man who could take upon 
him to assert, that the inhabitants of Scotland are more cre- 
dulous than their southern neighbours, must have very little 
knowledge indeed of the national character. If the Scottish 
historians, in relating the martial achievements of a brave 
prince, have thought so trivial a matter as that of his 
having made an air to a song beneath their notice, does 
this circumstance invalidate the tradition, or prove either 
that James IV. did not, or was incapable of framing a pas- 
toral little tune of sixteen bars ? I have known more than 
one instance of a common blacksmith's composing far longer, 
and even better ^:unes than this, although he could neither 


play nor read a single note. The royal family of Stuart, 
fi'om first to last, were all lovers of music and poetry, and 
were munificent and liberal patrons of these arts. 


This sprightly tune is the original melody of the old and 
very humorous ballad inserted in the Bannatyne Manuscript, 
finished in the year 1568, entitled " Rob's Jock." The song 
beginning " Jocky he came here to woo," is evidently more 
modern by at least half a century ; but most of the ideas, and 
many of the lines, are Hterally transcribed from the ancient 
ballad. One stanza of this rather broad-humoured ditty has 
been omitted, which was essential to render the ceremony of 
the Bedding either legal or proper in a moral point of view, 
namely, that which relates to the previous marriage of the 
, parties. In the old ballad the poet informs us, that 

Jock took Jenny by the hand. 

And cry'd ane feast, and slew ane cock, 

And made a bridal upaland ; 

Now half I gotten your Jenny, quo' Jock. 

This was another of those songs which were travestied by 
our Grub-street friends about the year 1700. It is called 
" The Scotch Wedding between Jocky and Jenny." It is 
printed in the " Pills," and consists of eight verses, of which 
the first and the two concluding ones will be quite enough 
for the majority of our readers. 

Then Jockey wou'd a wooing away. 

On our feast day when he was foo ; 

Then Jenny put on her best array. 

When she thought Jockey Avould come to woo. 

Then Jockey took Jenny by the nease. 
Saying, my dear lovey, can'st thou loof me .'* 
My father is dead, and has left me land. 
Some fair auld houses twa or three. 

Thou shalt be my lady o'er them aw ; 
I doot, quod Jenny, you do me mock. 
Ad ta my saw, quoth Jockey, then, 
I come to woo thee, Jenny, quoth Jock. 


This to be said after the SoNO. 
Sea then they gang-'d to the Kirk to he wad. Noow they den't use 
to wad in Scotchland as they wad in England ; for they gang to 
the Kirk, and they take the Donkin by the Rocket, and say, " Good 
morn, Sir Donkin." Says Sir Donkin, Ah Jockey, sen ater me, 
ivit ia ha Jenny to be thy luadded wife ? Ah, by my lady, (quoth 
Jockey) and thanks tiua lue aw my heart. Then says Sua Donkin, Ah 
Jenny, sen ater me. Wit ta ha Jockey to be thy wadded loon, to have 
and to hold for aver and aver, forsaking- aw other loojis, lubberloons, 
black-lips, blue naeses, and aw swigg-heU'd caaves ? We aiu my heart 
(quoth Jenny). Then says Sir Donkin, Ah, an these twa ben't asiueel 
wadded as eer I wadded any twa in aw Scotchland, the Deel and St 
Andrew part ye. 


The uncommonly wild structure of this melody, a copy of 
which is inserted in Mrs Crockat's Music-book, written in 
1709, evinces it to be of very high antiquity, and, like many 
others of the oldest Scottish airs, it produces effects diame- 
trically opposite to each other, from the various styles in 
which it is either played or sung. When set and sung to 
serious words in a soft and slow manner, it produces a most 
pathetic effect. On the other hand, when adapted and sung 
to humorous verses in a quick style, it becomes one of 
the most cheerful songs imaginable. We may adduce the 
ancient air of " Hey tuttie tattie," as another example in 
support of this fact. When this melody is adapted to such a 
song as " Scots Avha hae wi' Wallace bled," and the notes 
are sung full, well marked, and in moderate time, it blows 
the latent sparks of patriotism into a flame. But let the 
same melody be adapted to such a song as " I'm wearing 
awa, Jean," (written, we shall suppose, by a parent who had 
lost an only daughter, and who felt, from the efltects of a slow 
but consuming disease, the near approach of his own disso- 
lution), and sung in a soft, slow, and pathetic style, 
and what person of sensibility can refrain from shedding 
tears ? 

Before the days of Ramsay, the tune of " O'er Bogie" was 
adapted to an old silly song, the first stanza of which ran thus : 


162 CLxviii. — o'er bogik. 

I WILL awa wi' my luve, 

I will awa wi' her ; 

Tho' a my kin had sworn and said, 

I'll o'er Bogie wi' her. 

I'll o'er Bogie^ o'er scrogie. 

O'er Bogie wi' her ; 

In spite o' a' my kin hae said, 

I will awa wi' her. 

Ramsay took four of these lines for his chorus ; but he 
composed the rest of the song himself, and Thomson pub- 
lished it with the music in his Orpheus Caledonius in 1725. 
The other song in the Museum to the same tune, beginning 
" Well, I agree, you're sure of me,*" was likewise written by 
Ramsay, as a song for Jenny in his pastoral of " The 
Gentle Shepherd." 

Watts reprinted the song of '^ O'er Bogie," words and mu- 
sic, in the fifth volume of his Miscellany, in 1731. And Gay 
selected this tune for one of the songs in his musical opera 
of Achilles, beginning " Observe the wanton kittens play," 
acted at London in 1733, after the author's decease. 


This comic song was written by Allan Ramsay, as a sub- 
stitute for the older and more broad-humoured verses to the 
same tune. Thomson preferred Ramsay's version, and 
adapted it to the original melody in his Orpheus Caledonius 
in 1725. This song, words and music, was reprinted by 
Watts in his Musical Miscellany, vol. vi. in 1731. 


The more ancient title of this tune was " Hey, now the 
Day daws," the first line of a song which had been a very 
great favourite in Scotland several centuries ago. It is quoted 
by Gawin Douglas, Bishop of Dunkeld, in the prologue to 
the thirteenth book of his admirable translation of Virgil into 
Scottish verse, which was finished in 1513. It is likewise 
mentioned by his contemporary, the poet Dunbar, and many 



others. This song was long supposed to be lost ; but it is 
preserved in an ancient manuscript collection of poems be- 
longing to the library of the College of Edinburgh, The 
reader is here presented with a correct copy of this ancient 
Scottish poetical curiosity, extracted from the aforesaid ma- 
nuscript, united to its original melody. 

A very ancient Scottish Song. 



al.,,| ., ^ — ZjC 




Hey, now the day dauis. The jol - lie cok crauis. 

gi_2^: — J : J ^ ^ « , 

« ' » iS 1- 

^=zzJ=_J lL=^ =_z^ 






E— ft A 



Now shrouds the shauis Throw na-ture ai>one; The thissel- 



(^ -^ J^^ 

bz=b=t:=^=bK-^ -if^=d^dg-^l]J U ^, 

cok cryis On lovers wha lyis. Now skaillis the skyis. The 

ry: - — 

— 1 

1 1 


1 1 r 

.. J- 










■- 73- _ X. 




g'Qt IS near gone. 


The fields ourflouis, 
With gouans that grouis, 
Quhair lilies lyk louis 

Als rid as the rone. 


The turtill that treu is. 
With nots that reneuis, 
Hir hairtie pergeuis. 

The night is neir gone. 

Now hairtis and hynds, 
Conforme to thair kynds. 
They turssis thair tynds. 

On ground quhair they grone. 
Now hiirclionis with hairs. 
Ay passis in pairs, 
Quhilk deuly declairs. 

The night is neir gone, 


The seson excellis, 

Thrugh sweetness that sraellis • 

Now Cupid compellis. 

Our hairtis echone. 
On Venus wha vaiks. 
To muse on our maiks; 
Syne sing for their saiks. 

The night is neir gone. 


All curageous knichtis, 
Agains the day dichtis 
The breist-plate that bricht is. 

To feght with their fone. 
The stoned steed stampis. 
Throw courage and crampis. 
Syne on the land lampis, 

The night is neir gone. 


The frieks on fieldis. 

That wight waponis wieldis. 

With shyning bright shieldis. 

As Titan in Trone. 
Stiff speirs in reists. 
Over cursors creists, 
Ar brok on thair breists. 

The night is neir gone. 


So hard ar thair hittis. 
Some sueyis some sittis 
And some perforce flittis. 

On grund quhill they grone. 
Sjne grooms that gay is. 
On blonks that brayis. 
With swords assayis : 

The night is neir gone. 


Burns says, " I liave met the tradition universally over 
Scotland, and particularly about Stirling, in the neighbour- 
hood of the scene, that this air was Robert the Bruce's March 
at the battle of Bannockburn, which was fought in 1314. 
Ritson disputes the traditional account, and maintains that 
the Scots had no martial music among them at this time. 
He says, it was a custom among the Scots at this period, 
for every man in the host to wear a little horn^ with the 
blowing of which, as we are told by Froissart, they would 
make such a noise as if all the devils in hell had been amongst 
them. These horns, indeed, are the only music, (musical 
instruments he should have said) ever mentioned by Bar- 
bour." — Historical Essay on Scottish Song, p. 92. 

From the numerous sculptures on the ancient abbeys and 
churches throughout the kingdom, there is reason to believe 
that the Scots, long before the battle of Bannockburn, had as 
great a variety of musical instruments as any nation whatever. 
It may, indeed, be said, that these buildings were erected by 
foreign artists, who adorned the architecture with the orna- 
ments of other countries, and that the appearance of musical 
instruments on our abbeys and churches, is no better proof 
of their existence in Scotland, than those of griffins and dra- 
gons among the animal kingdom. But the evidence does not 
rest entirely upon the evidence of foreign stone masons ; for, if 
I remember rightly, the venerable Bede enumerates a variety 
of instruments in use amongst us, and Giraldus Sylvestres 
Cambrensis, Bishop of St Davids, who was preceptor to 
Prince John, son and successor to Henry the Second of 
England, who flourished in 11 GO, expressly informs us, that 
Scotland, in his time, not only rivalled, but even, in the opin- 
ion of many, far surpassed Ireland in the musical art. These 
facts prove, beyond dispute, that the musical art had at- 
tained to a very high state of perfection among the Scots at 
this remote period. That the air of " Hey, now the Day 
dauis," is not only as old, but even older than the reign of 
Robert the Bruce, seems indeed to be matter of fact, as well 
as a traditional story. 



Both Fabyan and Caxton inform us, that the Scots made 
various songs in derision of the Enghsh, on the marriage of 
Prince David, son of Robert the Bruce, in 1328, with Joan 
of Towers, sister to King Edward. Four lines of one of 
these songs are hkewise preserved by both historians, and, 
from the pecuhar structure of the verse, there can scarcely 
be a doubt that it was adapted to this very air, which must, 
of course, have been quite a common tune over all Scotland 
long before this period. Caxton says, " At that time the 
Englishmen were clothed all in cotes and hodes, peynted with 
lettres and with flours, full semely, with long berdes ; and 
therefor the Scottes made a bile, that was fastened upon the 
chirch dores of Seinte Petre, toward Stangate (in the city 
of York,) and thus said the Scripture in despite of English- 


LONG BERDES. IVritten A. D. 1328. 


/ Long berdes hertheles^ Peynted hodes wytles. Gay cotes 





graceles^ Makes Englond thriftyles. 

The set of this tune in Johnson's Museum is reversed. 
The first strain of the air, as printed in that work, ought to 
be the last, or chorus of the song, and vice versa. The first 
song in the Museum, beginning " Landlady count the lawin,"" 
was composed by Burns, except the concluding stanza, which 
was taken from the second soiig in the same Avork. The 
latter song is apparently^ the production of an anonymous 
versifier about the beginning of last century, when Charles 


XII. King of Sweden was secretly intriguing to restore the 
Stuart family to the British throne. It is here given entire. 

We EL may we a' be, 
111 may we never see ; 
God bless the King, 
And this gude company. 

Chokus — Fill, Jill a bumper high, 

Drain, drain your glasses dry ; 
Out upon him,Jie ! Ojie ! 
That winna do't again. 

Here to the King, sirs. 

Ye ken wha I mean, sirs. 

And to every honest man 

That will do't again. — Chorus — Fill, fill, &c. 

Here's to the Chieftains, 

Of the gallant Scottish clans ; 

They hae done it mair than ance. 

And will do't again. — Chorus — Fill, fill, &c. 

Here's to the King of Swede, 
May fresh laurels crown his head ; 
I Foul fa' every sneaking blade. 
That winna do't again. — Chorus — Fill, fill, &c. 

To mak a' things right now. 

He that drinks maun fight too. 

To shew his heart's upright too. 

And that he'll do't again. — Chorus — Fill, fill, &c. 

When you hear the pipe sounds 

Tuttie, tattie, to the drums. 

Up your swords and down your guns. 

And at the loons again ! — Chorus — Fill, fill. Sec. 

Burns also wrote an admirable patriotic song to the same 
air, beginning " Scots wha hae wi' Wallace bled ;" which is 
inserted in the sixth volume of the Museum, vide song 577. 
Mr William Clarke, organist in Edinburgh, who harmon- 
ized the melodies in that volume, adapted it to a very different 
air, which, although pretty enough, does not suit the verses 
so well as this old national tune. 

The following beautiful and pathetic verses, to the air of 
" Hei/ noxo the Day dauis^' made their appearance about the 
year 1800. The ingenious author still uifknown to the 



I'm wearing awa, Jean, 
Like snaw in a thaw, Jean, 
I'm wearing awa 

To the land o' the leal. 
There's nae sorrow there, Jean, 
There's neither cauld nor care, Jean, 
The day is ever fair 

In the land o' the leal. 

You've been leal and true, Jean, 
Your task's ended now, Jean, 
And I'll welcome you 

To the land o' the leal. 
Then dry that tearfu' e'e, Jean, 
My soul langs to be free, Jean> 
And angels wait on me 

To the land o' the leal. 

Our bonnie bairn's there, Jean, 
She was baith gude and fair, Jean, 
And we grudg'd her sair. 

To the land o* the leal. 
But sorrow's sel' wears past, Jean, 
And joy's coming fast, Jean, 
The joy that's aye to last 

In the laud o' the leal. 


A' our friends are gane, Jean, 
We've lang been left alane, Jean, 
We'll a' meet again 

In the land o' the leal. 
NoviJ^ fare yc weel, my ain, Jean, 
This Avorld's care is vain, Jean, 
We'll meet, and ay be fain. 

In the land o' the leal. 


This song, beginning " Now wat ye wha I met yestreen/"' 
was written by Ramsay, prior to the year 1724, to the fine 
old Scottish air, called " Wat ye wha I met yestreen," the 
first line of a very old but rather licentious ditty. Ramsay 
has retained the first stanza of the older song, but it does not 
unite very happily with his own verses, which were published 
in theTea»Table Miscellany in 1724. The second stanza is 


the commencement of that part of the song which was writ- 
ten by Ramsay. 

O Katie J wilt thou gang wi' me, 
And leave this dinsom town awhile? 
The blossom's sprouting frae the tree. 
And a the simmer's gaun to smile. 
The mavis, nightingale, and lark ; 
The bleating lambs, and whistling hynd ; 
In ilka dale, green-shaw, and park. 
Will nourish health, and glad your mind. 

This humorous little song, beginning " My mother's ay 
glowring o'er me," was also written by Allan Ramsay, as a 
sequel to his " Young Laird and Edinburgh Katy." It was 
first printed in the Tea-Table Miscellany in 1724. The 
verses are adapted to an ancient tune, in triple time, called 
A Health to Betty ^ which originally consisted of one strain, 
and is printed in this simple style in Thomson's Orpheus 
Caledonius, in 1725, _This tune appears to have been one 
of those which were introduced into England about the 
union of the crowns ; for it is one of those collected and pub- 
lished by old John Playford, in his " Dancing Master,"" 
printed in 1657. The second strain is a modern addition. 
The silly old verses begin, 

O LET us swim in blood of grapes, 

The richest of the city. 

And solemneeze. 

Upon our knees, 

A health to noble Betty. 

The Muses with the milk of queens 

Did feed this comely creature. 

That she became 

A princely dame, 

A miracle of nature. 

The graces aU, both great and small. 
Were not by half so pretty ; 
The queen of love. 
Thai, reigns above, 
Cou'd not compare with Bettj^ 
&c. &c. &c. 



Burns informs us, that he composed these verses on Miss 
Isabella M'Leod of Rasay, alluding to her feelings on the 
death of her sister, and the still more melancholy death of her 
sister's husband, the late Earl of Loudon. This event hap- 
pened in 1786. This elegiac song is adapted to an old and 
very beautiful Gaehc melody, called Macgrigair a Ruadh- 
ruidh. The following elegant and spirited English version 
of the Gaelic song made its appearance upwards of thirty 
years ago. 


From the chace in the mountam 
As I was retunimg-. 
By the side of a fountain 
Malvina sat mourning. 
To the winds that loud whistl'd 
She told her sad stor}^. 
And the vallies re-echoed^ 
Macgregor a ruadhri. 

Like a flash of red light'ning 
O'er the heath came Mac Ara, 
More fleet than the roe-buck 
On lofty Beinn Lara : 
O, where is Macgregor.^ 
Say, where does he hover ? 
You son of bold Calmak, 
Why tarries my lover .'' 

Then the voice of soft sorrow 
From his bosom thus sounded. 
Low lies your Macgregor, 
Pale, mangled, and wounded ! 
Overcome with deep slumber. 
To the rock I convey'd him. 
Where the sons of black malice 
To his foes have betray'd him. 


As the blast from the mountain 
Soon nips the fresh blossom. 
So died the fair bud 
Of fond hope in her bosom. 


Macgregor ! Macgregor! 
Loud echo resounded ; 
And the hills rung in pity, 
Macgregor is wounded. 


Near the brook in the valley 
The green turf did hide her. 
And they laid down Macgregor 
In death's sleep beside her. 
Secure is their dwelling 
From foes and fell slander. 
Near the loud-roaring waters 
Their spirits oft wander. 


This song was written by William Hamilton of Bangour, 
" Upon hearing his Picture was in Chloe's Breast,"" to the 
old tune, called The Fourteen of October, or St Crispin's 
Day. Hamilton gave Ramsay a copy of the song, who pub- 
lished it in his Tea-Table Miscellany in 1724, and Thomson 
published it with the music in his Orpheus Caledonius in 



This song was written by Burns, in 1787, to a Gaelic me- 
lody, which he picked up in the north of Scotland, and sent 
to Johnson. In October 1794, he afterwards altered and en- 
larged the song, to suit the air of Cauld Kail in Aberdeen. 
The Gaelic air, however, appears, after all, to agree much 
better with the plaintive subject of the song. 


This song was written by Dr Blacklock, in 1787, to the 
tune of " Miss Hamilton's Delight," and presented to John- 
son for the Museum. The melody appears to have been 
composed about the same period. The copy from which 
Johnson engraved the tune is in the hand-writing of Mr Al- 
lan Masterton, with some slight alterations by Mr Stephen 



In December 1591, Francis Stuart, Earl of Both well, 
had made an attempt to seize the person of his sovereign, 
James VI. ; but his designs being frustrated, he retired to- 
wards the north of Scotland. The king unadvisedly gave a 
commission to George Gordon, Earl of Huntly, to pursue 
Bothwell and his followers with fire and sword. Huntly, 
under cover of executing that commission, took occasion to 
revenge a private quarrel he had against James Stuart, Earl 
of Murray, who was a relation of the Earl of Bothwell. In 
the night of Feb. 7, 1592, he beset Murray's house, burnt 
it to the ground, and slew Murray himself, a young noble- 
man of the most promising virtues, and the very darling of 
the people. — See Robertson's History of Scotland. 

The following account of the murder is given by a contem- 
porary writer, and a person of credit. Sir James Balfour, 
Knight, Lyon King of Arms, from his manuscript of " The 
Annals of Scotland," deposited in the Advocates Library at 
Edinburgh : " The seventh of Febry, this zeire, 1592, the 
Earle of Murray was cruelly murthered by the Earle of 
Huntley, at his house in Dunibrissel, in FyfFe-shyre, and 
with him Dunbar, SherifFe of Murray. It was given out, 
and publickly talkt, that the Earl of Huntley was only the 
instrument of perpetrating this facte, to satisfie the King's 
jealousie of Murray, quhome the Queene more rashely than 
wisely, some few days before, had commendit, in the King's 
hearing, with too many epithets of a proper and gallant man. 
The reasons of these surmises proceedit from a proclamatione 
of the King, the 13 of Marche following, inhibiting the zoung 
Earle of Murray to persue the Earl of Huntley, for his father's 
slaughter, in respect he being wardeit (imprisoned) in the 
Castell of Blacknesse for the same murther, was willing to 
abide a tryall, averring that he had done nothing but by the 
King's majestie's commissione, and was neither airt nor part 
in the murther." — Balfour's Annals of' Scotland, MSS. 


The present Earl of Murray has now in his possession a 
picture of his ancestor, naked and covered with wounds, which 
had been carried about, according to the custom of that age, 
in order to inflame the populace to revenge his death. If 
this picture does not flatter, he well deserved the name of 
The Bonny Earl, for he is there represented as a tall, 
graceful, and comely personage. It is a tradition in the fa- 
mily, that Gordon of Bucky gave the Earl of Murray a 
wound in the face ; Murray, half expiring, said, " You hae 
spoilt a better face than your awin." Upon this, Bucky, 
pointing his dagger at Huntly's breast, swore, " You shall 
be as deep as I ;'' and forced him to pierce the defenceless 
body of Murray.— -P^rc?/. 

Burns observes, that " the last verse of this old fragment 
is beautiful and affecting." — Reliques. 

Oh ! lang will his lady- 
Look o'er the castle Downe,* 
Ere she see the Earl of Murray 
Come sounding through the town. 


This song, beginning " Amidst a rosy bank of flowers," 
was written by Robert Fergusson the Scottish poet. In the 
Museum it is adapted to the tune of " The Highland La- 
mentation," which was composed by James Oswald, and pub- 
lished in the third volume of his Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, p. 24. 

This song was composed by Burns in 17S7, in compli- 
ment to Mrs M'Lauchlan, whose husband was an ofiicer, and 
at that time abroad with his regiment in India. In the Mu- 
seum it is adapted to the Gaelic air of " Drumion dubh."''' 
In Oswald's Pocket Companion there is a slow air in triple 
time, called " Drimen Duff";"" but it is quite a different tune 
from that in the Museum. 

* A seat belonging to the family of Earl Moray. 



There are two songs in the Museum adapted to this an- 
cient and cheerful Scottish melody. The first of these, "with 
the exception of two lines taken from the ^chorus of the old 
song, was composed by Burns in 1787, on Miss Euphemia 
Murray of Lintrose, who, he says, was commonly, and de- 
servedly, called " The Flower of Strathmore." 

The second set of verses to the same tune in that work, is 
the fine old humorous song of " Andro and his cutty Gun,"" 
which Ramsay published in the fourth volume of his Tea- 
Table Miscellany, with some verbal alterations by himself. 
Burns observes, that " this blythsome song, so full of Scot- 
tish humour and convivial merriment, is an intimate favorite 
at hridal-trystes and house-heatings. It contains a spirited 
picture of a country ale-house, touched off with all the light- 
some gayety so peculiar to the rural muse of Caledonia. — See 
Select Scottish Songs, with Ohse^'vations by Burns, edited by 
CromeJc, vol. ii. London, 1810." In a letter to Mr George 
Thomson, dated 19th November, 1794, Burns says, " An- 
dro and his Cutty Gun is the work of a master. By the 
way, are you not quite vexed to think, that those men of 
genius, for such they certainly were, who composed our fine 
Scottish lyrics, should be unknown ? It has given me many 
a heart- ache." — Burns'" Woi'Jcs, edited by Currie, vol. iv. In 
Cromek's Select Songs, with Observations by Burns, he again 
alludes to this song, and says, " Instead of the line ' Girdle 
cakes weel toasted brown,' I have heard it sung, ' Knuckled 
cakes weel brandert brown.' These oatmeal cakes are 
kneaded out with the knuckles, and toasted over the red em- 
bers of wood on a gridiron. They are remarkably fine, and 
have a delicate relish when eaten warm with ale. On winter 
nights the landlady heats them, and drops them into the 
quaigh to warm the ale; 

" Weel does the cannie kimmer ken 
To gar the swats gae glibber down." 



Popular tradition attributes the origin of this ballad to 
the following circumstances : A certain Earl of Cassilis had 
married the daughter of a nobleman contrary to her own 
wishes, she having previously bestowed her affections on 
John Faw, or Faa, a young gentleman of a very respectable 
family in the neighbourhood of Dunbar. The disappointed 
lovei*, not long thereafter, learned that the Earl was on a visit 
to a relation in a distant county, and had left his lady at 
home. Considering this to be a favourable opportunity for 
obtaining the object of his affections, Faa departed for the 
residence of that nobleman, accompanied with eight of his re- 
tainers, all in the disguise of gypsies, and succeeded, with no 
great difficulty, in carrying the lady off. The Earl, on his 
return, immediately assembled some of his vassals, and pur- 
sued the fugitives to the borders of England, where, being 
overtaken, a battle ensued, in which Faa and seven of his ac- 
complices were left dead on the spot, and the lady, Avith 
Faa's only surviving companion, the supposed author of the 
ballad, were taken prisoners. The Earl, having thus re- 
covered his fair fugitive, built a tower in the village of May- 
bole, upon which are represented the heads of Faa, and the 
seven associates who fell with him, sculptured in stone be- 
neath one of its turrets, and here he shut up his unfortunate 
Countess for the rest of her life. It is said, that the lady, 
during her confinement, wrought the history of the transac- 
tion in tapestry, which is still preserved in Culzean Castle ; 
and that the ford, by which she crossed the river Doon with 
Faa and his party, near Cassilis House, is to this day called 
the Gypsy Steps. But none of the genealogical accounts of 
this noble family, that have yet appeared in print, affords the 
smallest clue wdth regard to the truth or falsehood of the tra- 
ditional story. Burns says, that Johnnie Faa is the only old 
song which he could ever trace as belonging to the extensive 
county of Ayr. 


This tune appears in the first volume of Oswald's Caledo- 
nian Pocket Companion, printed in 1740. The composer 
has stolen some bars of the second part of this tune from the 
old air of Andro and his Cutty Gun. The following Jacobite 
verses appear in a very rare and curious little book, entitled, 
" A Collection of Loyal Songs, Poems, &c." printed in the 
year 1750, page 70 and 71. 

To daunton me, to daunton me. 
Do you ken the things that would daunton me ? 
Eighty-eight and eighty-nine. 
And a' the dreary years since syne. 
With Cess, and Press, and Presbytry, 
Good faith, these had liken till hae daunton'd me. 

But to wanton me, but to wanton me. 

Do you ken the things that would wanton me ? 

To see good corn upon the rigs. 

And banishment to a' the Whigs, 

And right restor'd where right should be ; 

O ! these are the things that wad wanton me ! 

But to wanton me, but to wanton me ; 

And ken ye what maist would wanton me ? 

To see King James at Edinbrough cross. 

With fifty thousand foot and horse. 

And the usurper forc'd to flee ; 

O this is what maist would wanton me. 

The humorous song, which is set to this air in Johnson's 
Museum, beginning " The blude red rose at yule may blaw," 
was, with the exception of some lines of the chorus of the old 
song, wholly composed by Burns, in 1787 ; the original copy 
of it in his own hand-writing, which he sent to Johnson, is 
now lying before me. 

Mr Chalmers claims this song, beginning at " Polwart 
on the green," as the production of Allan Ramsay. — 
Burns, on the other hand, asserts it to have been written 
by a Captain John Drummond M'Gregor, of the family of 
Bochaldie. I should rather think that Mr Burns had been 


misinformed ; for Mr Chalmers was at very great pains to 
procure authentic infonnation relative to those songs in the 
'I'' ea-Table Miscellany which were dejacto written by Ramsay, 
and the Editor of the present work has a copy of the Orpheus 
Caledonius in 1733, Avhere the letter R, in a pi-etty old 
hand, is prefixed to this song in the index, to denote that 
it was written by Ramsay. Ramsay published it in his 
Tea- Table Miscellany in 1724, and the first four lines of the 
first verse, and the concluding four lines of the last, are print- 
ed in Italics, to show that they belonged to a much older song 
to the same air. Thomson adapted Ramsay's version of the 
song to the original air in his Orpheus Caledonius, in 
1725. Polwarth is the name of a small village in Ber- 
wickshire ; in the middle of it are two ancient thorn-trees, 
a few yards distant from each other, around which, it was 
formerly the custom for every newly-married pair, and the 
company invited to the wedding, to dance in a ring. From 
this circumstance originated the old song of " Polwarth on 
the Green." The air, under the title qfPolwart on the Green^ 
is inserted in Mrs Crockafs book, written in 1 709, and in 
Craig's Old Scottish Airs, in 1730. Gay selected this tune for 
one of his songs in the opera of " Polly," beginning " Love 
now is nought but art ;" printed, but not acted in 1729. 


This song, in the manner of Shenstone, beginning " Ye 
rivers so limpid and clear," with the tune to which it is set 
in the Museum, was written and composed in 1787, by Dr 
Blacklock, and by him presented to Johnson for the second 
volume of that work. The Doctor's songs in the Museum 
are generally distinguished by the letter D. Burns also ob- 
serves, that this song and air are both by Dr Blacklock. 


This old comic song, Avith its original music, never appear- 
ed in a regular collection till Johnson gave it a niche in his 
IMuseum, although the verses were published by David Herd 



;n bis Ancient and Modern Scottish Songs, vol. ii. printed 
at Edinburgh in 1776. 

Burns says, that the story of the ballad was founded on 
fact : " A John Hunter, ancestor to a very respectable farm- 
ing family, who live in a place, in the parish of Galston, (in 
Ayrshire) called Barr-Mill, was the luckless hero, that had a 
Jiorse, and had nae mair ; for some little youthful follies he 
found it necessary to make a retreat to the West Highlands, 
where hejee'dhimselftoa Highland laird; for that is the ex- 
pression of all the oral editions of the song I ever heard. 
The present Mr Hunter, who told me the anecdote, is the 
great-grandchild to our hero." — Reliqiies. 


This beautiful song, the production of a lady whose name 
I have been unable to discover, is adapted to the old air of 
" The Banks of Spey," which both M'Gibbon and Oswald 
have inserted in their respective Collections of Scottish Tunes. 
The lady's signature in the Museum is the letter M. The 
original song of " The Banks of Spey" is supposed to be lost. 


This Jacobite effusion, beginning " Come, boat me o'er, 
come, row me o'er, come, boat me o'er to Charlie," made 
its first appearance about the year 1746. The tune 
is uncommonly sprightly, and Oswald gave it a place 
in the fourth volume of his Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, page 7. Mr Butler, the musician, made an ex- 
cellent rondo of it for the piano-forte or harpsichord, which 
has long been a favourite. The verses in the Museum were 
revised and improved by Burns. The fourth number of Os- 
wald's work having been printed as early as 1741, four years 
before Prince Charles arrived in Scotland, it is probable that 
another and a much older song, which had no relation to the 
Jacobite verses whatever, was then in fashion, and that from 
the similarity of the name, the same title and chorus had af- 
terwards been incorporated in the Jacobite stanzas. The 

CLXXXVII. — o'er the water to CHARLIE, 179 

editor has also seen this tune called Shamhuy, in some print- 
ed copies of it, but from what circumstance he has not yet 
been able to discover. A more complete version of this song 
may be seen in Hogg's Jacobite Reliques. 


This lively Scottish tune is of considerable antiquity. It 
is printed in the third volume of Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion in 1741, under the title of Up and war them a\ 
Willie. It was originally adapted to a silly old song, begin-r 

Up and war them a', Willie, 
Up and war them a ; 
Up and sell your sour milk. 
And cock aboon them a', Willie, 
Up and war them a', Willie, 
Up and war them a' ; 
Ye'se be King of Musslebrough 
And Laird of Fisherraw, WiUie. 
&c. &c. &c. 

The ballad, to which the air is now adapted in this Mu- 
seum, was composed after the battle of SherrifTmuir or Dun- 
blane, fought on the 13th of November 1715, between the 
Duke of Argyle for the Government, and the Earl of Mar 
for the Chevalier. Both parties claimed the victory. 

The late Mr Thomas Neil, who was a carpenter, and one 
of the precentors in Edinburgh, gave Burns a copy of this 
song for Johnson's Museum. Neil, and his friend, the late 
Alexander Macdonald, likewise a precentor in the same city, 
used to sing these humorous old songs with great effect. The 
writer of this article has frequently heard them both with 
much pleasure, Cromek says, that the copy of the song in 
Johnson's Museum contains great variations from that in- 
serted in the " Select Scottish Songs, with Critical Observa- 
tions by Burns," edited by Cromek himself. This assertion is 
erroneous ; for both copies are now lying before me, and I do 
not perceive the smallest variation in one verse, word, or letter. 

Burns says, " The expression ' Up and warn a', Willie,' 
alludes to the crantara, or warning of a Highland clan to 


arms. Notwithstanding of this, the Lowlanders in the west 
and south say, ' Up and waur them a.' " — Reliques. But 
the Lowland expression has no connection with the Crannta- 
tara^ or " Beam of Gathering" of the Highland chieftains ; 
for the Scottish word war^ or waur, signifies to surpass or 
excel another in any thing. The ballad in the Museum, in 
Avhich part of the old chorus of "Up and war them a', Willie," 
is introduced, is far more modern than that old but silly song, 
of which one stanza has been quoted as a sufficient specimen. 


This song was written by Burns in 1 787, in compliment 
to Miss Jenny Cruikshank, only child of the late Mr Wil- 
liam Cruikshank, one of the masters of the high-school, 
Edinburgh. The air w^as composed by Mr David Sillar, 
formerly merchant, and afterwards schoolmaster, at Irvine. 
" He is the Davie, (says Burns) to whom I address my 
printed poetical epistle in the measure of the ' Cherry and 
the Slae.' " — Reliques. 



This charming song, beginning " Go on, sweet bird, and 
end my care," is the production of the same lady who wrote 
" Talk not of Love, it gives me pain." — Vide Song 186, in 
the Museum, The Address to the Blackbird is adapted to 
the air of " The Scots Queen," in Oswald's Pocket Compa- 
nion. , Mr Stephen Clarke, however, made an addition of four 
bars to the first strain, in order that the melody might suit 
the verses better. /^*c'*4?fVM;»-t'.i? >■%.." 


The earliest edition of this very humorous song, which 
I have met with, is that in Yair's Charmer, vol. ii. printed 
at Edinburgh in 1751. It is there called '< The Druken 
Wife o' Gallowa," which induced Burns to consider it to be 
the production of some poet in that county. About twenty 


years ago, the late Mrs Brown of Newbattle informed nie, 
that she had frequently heard the author (whose name I 
have since forgotten,) sing this song, when residing with her 
friend Captain Mason, at Eaglesham, in the county of Ren- 
frew, She likewise told me, that the gentleman composed it 
merely as Sijeu d'esprit ; for his wife was a lady of the most 
amiable manners and exemplary behaviour. The following 
lines, " But rants up some fool-sang, like Up your heart 
Charlie^''' seem to point out that the song was composed after 
the defeat of Prince Charles Edward at Culloden, on the 
16th April 1746, and had found its way into Yair's Collection 
not long after the date of its composition. 

The tune of " Hooly and Fairly, or The Druken Wife of 
Galloway,**' appears in Oswald's Pocket Companion, vol. 10th ; 
but it is only a slight variation of the old melody of " Faith ! 
I defy thee,'' which may be seen in the 5th volume of the 
same work, p. 32. 

As the copy of the song inserted in the Museum was alter- 
ed considerably, though I do not think improved, by Burns, 
some of the best stanzas being altogether omitted, it is here 
given entire from Yair's Collection in 1751. 

Down in yon meadow a couple did tarrie. 
The wife she drank naething but sack and canary ; 
Tlie gudeman complain'd to her friends right early, 
O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 


Hooly and fairly, Hooly and fairly, 

O ! gin my luije wad drink hooly and fairly. 

First she drank cromniy, and syne she drank garle. 

And syne she drank my bonnie grey mairie. 

That carried me thro' a' the dubs and the lairie ; 

O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, S;c. 

She drank her hose, she drank her shoon. 

And syne she drank her bonny new gown ; 

She drank her sark that cover'd her rarely, 

O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, §;c. 

Wad she drink her ain things I wad na care. 

But she drinks my claiths I canna weel spare ; 


When I'm wi' my gossips it angers me saiily ; 
! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairiy. 
Hooly and fairly, SjC. 

My Sunday's coat she has laid it a wad ; 
The best blue bonnet e'er was on my head : 
At kirk and maiket I'm cover'd but barely ; 
O ! gin my wife wad diink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, S^c. 

My bonny white mittens I wore on my hands, 

Wi' her neighbour's wife she has laid them in pawns ; 

My bane-headed staiF that I loo'd sae dearly ; 

! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 

Hooly and fairly, ^-c. 

1 never was given to wrangling or strife. 
Nor did I deny her the comforts of life. 

For when there's a war — I'm ay for a parley ; 
O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, S^c. 

When there's ony money she maun keep the purse ; 
If I seek but a bawbee, she'll scold and she'll curse : 
She lives like a queen — I scrimped and sparely ; 
O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, ^c. 

A pint wi' her cummers I wad her allow j 
But when she sits down she fiUs hersel' fu". 
And when she is fu', she is unco camstairie ; 
O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, ^c. 

When she comes to the street she roars and she rants. 
Has no fear o' her neighbours, nor minds the house wants. 
But rants up some fool-sang, like Up your heart, Charlie ; 
O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, ^c. 

When she comes hame she lays on the lads, 

The lasses she ca's baith bitches and jades. 

And ca's mysel' ay an auld cuckold carlie ; 

O ! gin my wife wad drink hooly and fairly. 
Hooly and fairly, hooly and fairly, 
O ! gin my wife wad di'ink hooly and fairly. 


This ancient comic dialogue, between a mother and her 
daughter on the subject of marriage, is marked in Ramsay ""s 
Tea-Table Miscellany with the letter Q, to denote that it is 


an old song with additions. But the old ballad contains 
many curious and naive remarks of the daughter, on the per- 
son and manners of Auld Rob, which Ramsay has evident- 
ly omitted on account of their coarseness. The ballad there- 
fore is much curtailed, in place of being enlarged. Thomson 
published it in the same way in his Or} heus Caledonius, in 
1725, and it was reprinted by Watts, in the third volume of 
his Musical Miscellany, London, 1730. Auld Rob Morris 
is one of Craig's select Scottish tunes, printed in his Collec- 
tion the same year. 

In November 1792, Burns composed the following excel- 
lent verses to the old air ; in which the two first lines only 
are borrowed from the old ballad : 

There's auld Rob Morris, that wons in yon glen^ 
He's the king o' guid fellows, and wale of auld men ; 
He has gow'd in his coffers, he has owsen and kine. 
And ae bonnie lassie, his darling and mine. 

She's fresh as the morning, the fairest in May ; 
She's sweet as the ev'ning amang the new hay ; 
As blythe and as artless as the lamb on the lea. 
And dear to my heart as the light to the e'e. 

But ! she's an heiress — auld Robin's a laird. 

And my daddie has nought but a cot-house and yard ; 

A wooer like me manna hope to come speed ; 

The wounds I must hide that will soon be my dead. 

The day comes to me, but delight brings me nane ; 
The night comes to me, but my rest it is gane : 
I wander my lane like a night-troubl'd ghaist. 
And I sigh as my heart it wad burst in my breast. 

had she but been of a lower degree, 

1 then might hae hop'd she wad smil'd upon me ; • 
O, how past descriving had then been my bliss. 

As now my distraction no words can express. 


This pretty little song was written by Burns, though he 
did not choose to acknowledge it. I have the original, in his 
own hand-writing, now lying before me. The verses are 
adapted to the fine old tune, called " The Braes of Balqu- 
hiddei-," from a parish of that name, through which passes 


184 cxciii.— AND I'll kiss thee yet, yet. 

the military road from Stirling to Fort William. It appears 
that this song was a great favourite of Mr Stephen Clarke ; 
for at the bottom of the MS. music-sheet, where this tune is 
inserted with its bass, there is a note in his hand- writing, in 
in which he says, " I am charmed with this song almost as 
much as the lover is with Bonny Peggy Alison. — S. C." 



The two first verses are a fragment of the old song, which 
does not appear to have been received into any regular col- 
lection before Johnson's Museum, although the tune appears 
in Oswald's Pocket Companion, vol vii. p. 9 The last stan- 
za of the song was added by Burns, in compliment, as he says, 
*' to one of the worthiest fellows in the world, WiUiam Dun- 
bar, Esq., writer to the signet, Edinburgh, and colonel of 
the Crochallan corps, a club of wits, who took that title at 
the time of raising the fencible regiments." — Reliques. 



BuENs says, that he composed this song " on one of the 
most accomplished of women. Miss Peggy Chalmers that 
was, now Mrs Lewis Hay of Forbes and Co's bank, Edin- 
burgh.'" — Reliques. It is set to the tune of Neil Gow"'s Lamen- 
tation for Abercairney. 

The air which old Neil Gow composed on the death of Mr 
Moray of Abercairney, is an excellent slow strathspey, and 
is well adapted to the violin, piano forte, and other musical in- 
struments ; but the melody is not at all suitable for the 
voice, the leaps of eleven notes from E to A, in alt, are 
entirely forbidden in vocal composition ; such sudden skips 
from the natural to the Julsetto, being utterly destructive of 
every good effect. 



This excellent comic song beginning, " Tibbie I hae 
seen the day," was composed by Burns in 1776*, when he 


was only about seventeen years old. It is set to the charm- 
inar old tune of Invercauld's Reel. 




This song, beginning Where waving pines salute the skies, 
was composed by Dr Blacklock in 1787, expressly for the 
Museum. It is adapted to the old air of " Bonnie Kate of 
Edinburgh," from Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, 
vol. V. p. 5. 


This song, beginning Clarinda, mistress of my soicl, was 
written by Burns in 1787, in compliment to the lady, who 
obtained such celebrity after the decease of our bard, in con- 
sequence of the publication of " Burns' Letters to Clarinda," 
now Mrs Meiklejohn of Edinburgh. The tune was har- 
monized by Mr Stephen Clarke, organist, Edinburgh ; but 
his son thinks, it was composed by Mr Schetky. 



The proper name of this ancient Scottish Song is " Crom- 
leck's Lilt." Towards the close of the sixteenth century, 
young Chisholm of Cromleck became much attached to Miss 
Helen Murray, commonly called, " Fair Helen of Ardoch." 
Helen's maternal grandfather, Murray of Strewan, was one 
of the seventeen sons of Tullibardine. Her own father 
Stirling of Ardoch, had, by his wife, Margaret Murray, one 
of Strewan's daughters, a family of no less than thirty-one 
children, of whom fair Helen was one ; and the late Mr Stir- 
ling, her youngest brother, commonly styled the Tutor of 
Ardoch, who died in 1715, at the extraordinary age of 111 
years, was another. From these circumstances, it is obvious, 
that Helen could have but small pecuniary expectations from 
her family, and that her lover's affection was pure and disin- 
terested. Being under the necessity of goino- to France 
young Cromleck intrusted the management of his correspon- 


186 cxcix. — ^ckomlet''s lilt. 

dence with his mistress, during his absence abroad, to a 
friend in the neighbourhood of Dunblane. This man, how- 
ever, became deeply enamoured with Helen, and, in order to 
secure her to himself, he not only secreted every letter in- 
trusted to his care, but likewise artfully prepossessed the 
young lady with stories unfavourable to Cromleck ; and, by 
similar misrepresentations to him respecting the virtue and 
affections of the lady, all connection between the lovers was 
broken off. Helen remained- inconsolable, and Cromleck, 
while abroad, and his mind influenced by her supposed infi- 
delity, composed that affecting ballad called Cromleck's Lilt, 
which, considering the period of its production, affords at 
once a proof of the strength and elegance of his poetical ge- 
nius, and the ardency and steadiness of his love. 

The perfidious confidant, after thinking that time had suf- 
ficiently softened Helen's sorrow for the loss of her former 
lover, paid his addresses to the young lady himself. Helen 
obstinately refused to listen to them, but being overcome by 
the incessant importunities of her relatives, she at last yielded 
a slow and reluctant assent. The marriage ceremony was 
performed, but here her compliance ended. On attempting 
to place her on the nuptial couch, she sprang from it with 
horror, exclaiming, that she heard the voice of young Crom- 
leck, crying, " O ! Helen, Helen, mind me !" Cromleck ar- 
riving soon after, discovered the deep treachery and villany 
of his pretended friend ; the marriage was annulled, and fair 
Helen became the happy wife of her beloved Cromleck. Such 
is the traditional story. 

It is said, that James the 6th, when passing from Perth to 
Stirling in 1617, paid a visit to Helen's mother, the Lady 
Ardoch, who was then a widow. Her children were all 
dressed and drawn up on the lawn to receive his Majesty. 
On the King''s seeing this uncommon spectacle, he said, 
" Madam, how many are there of them ?" " Sire,"" she jo- 
cosely answered, " I only want your help to make out the 
two chalders !"'"' A chalder contains sixteen bolls. The king 


laughed heartily at the joke, and afterwards ate a coUop sit- 
ting on a stone in the close. 

As the Tutor of Ardoch, who was the youngest son of 
this extraordinary family, died in 1715, at the advanced age 
of 111, he would be about thirteen years old when his Ma- 
jesty visited his mother. The Tutor, when more than a 
hundred, could drink a bottle of ale at a draught. His con- 
versation was extremely amusing, from his great knowledge of 
the history of private life. 

The ballad of Cromleck's Lilt, beginning " Since all thy 
vows, fair maid," is inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius, with 
the music, in 1 725. The tune was selected by the Reverend 
Wilham Geddes, in 1673, for one of the hymns in his Saints'" 
Recreation, which was afterwards printed at Edinburgh in 
1683. This hymn is entitled, " The Pathway to Paradise, 
or the Pourtraiture of Piety." The words and tune of Crom- 
leck's Lilt, in the Museum, were copied from the Orpheus 
Caledonius. In the last stanza but one are the following 


lines : 

The courteous Red-breast, he 
With leaves will cover me. 
And sing my elegy 
With doleful voice. 

Those lines evidently refer to the fine old ballad, called 

the " Babes in the Wood," which must have been written as 

early as the time of James VI. The corresponding lines in 

the old ballad run : 

No burial those pretty babes 
Of any man receives. 
But llobin-red-breast jjainfuUy 
Did cover them with leaves. 


The Editor has not yet been so fortunate as to discover 
who was the author of this plaintive pastoral song ; but 
there are several variations between the copy inserted in the 
Museum, and the following stall edition of the ballad. 


The winter it is past. 

And the simmer's come at last. 

The little birds now sing on ev'ry tree j 

The hearts of these are glad, 

But mine is very sad. 

For ray lover is parted from me. 

The rose upon the brier. 

By the waters running clear. 

May have charms for the linnet and the bee ; 

Their little loves are blest. 

And their little hearts at rest, 

But my lover is parted from me. 

My love is like the sun. 

That unwearied doth run. 

Through the firmament, ay constant and true ; 

But his is like the moon. 

That wanders up and down. 

And is ev'ry month changing anew. 

All you that are in love. 

And cannot it remove. 

How I pity the pains that you endure ; 

For experience makes me know. 

That your hearts are full of woe, 

A woe that no mortal can cure. 

The plaintive little air to which this song is adapted, is in- 
serted under the same title in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, book 7th. 


[ * 189 ] 





This song must have been very popular. I have it in its 
original form, as a broadside, printed at the time, with this 
title, " The Battle of Preston, to the Tune of Killiecranky." 
It next appeared in " The Charmer," vol. ii. p. 349, Edinb. 
1751. Neither of these contains the verse, beginning 
"And Caddell drest;" but in the latter copy there are some 
explanatory foot-notes, in which Menteath is described as 
Minister of Longformacus, Simpson, as Minister of Falla, 
George Campbell, as a wright in Edinburgh, and Mr Myrie, 
as a student of physic from Jamaica. 

The author of this remarkably clever satirical song is 
called " Mr Skirvin" by Ritson, " Mr Skirven" by Sten- 
house, and '•^Alexander Skirving" by Allan Cunningham, 
who says, that " besides his gift at song-making, which was 
considerable, he was one of the wittiest and most whimsical 
of mankind." His name was Adam Skirving, and I am 
happy in being able to give some particulars of his history 
from the best authority. The farm of Garleton, where he 
resided for the greater part of his life, is about two miles 
from Haddington, on the road to Gosford. He was a remark- 
ably handsome man, free and outspoken in his manners, and 
being very saving in money-matters, he left a considerable 
fortune to his surviving children. He was twice married. 
His eldest son by his first marriage, Archibald Skirving, 
the portrait painter, who resembled him in person and 



disposition, was well known in Edinburgh. The second son, 
Captain Robert Skirving, also inherits his father's poetical 
genius. After many years' service in the East Indies, he 
returned home in the year 1806, and still survives, at Croys, 
near Castle Douglas. 

The following is the copy of a letter from Captain Skir- 
ving, addressed to George Cleghorn of Weens, Esq., in 
reply to a request for some information respecting his father, 
Adam Skirving : — 

" Croys, by Castle-Douglas, 29<A Oct. 1838. 

" My dear Sir, — I have been favoured with the memo- 
randum which you left with Major Yule on the 24th inst., 
and am quite willing to aid your views, but much fear it 
will be far short of what you have been led to expect. 

"My Father was born in 1719, and died in 1803; was 
educated at Preston-kirk in East Lothian, where his grand- 
father, after leaving Stenton, farmed Preston-mains. The 
printed epitaph is as characteristic as I could make it, and 
was transferred to a marble slab in the churchyard of Athel- 
staneford, where his remains are deposited. The one in 
manuscript is by my Brother, and was found amongst his 
papers after his death, and is perhaps the more appropriate 
of the two. 

" Our Father was, by his own account, a bad scholar, but 
became an indefatigable reader, and knew more of history, 
geography, and astronomy, tlian was usual with those of 
his line. His first farm was Prora, whence he moved to 
Garleton, where he spent the rest of his days. He for 
many years attended Leith races on horseback, during the 
whole week, yet always slept at home ; was frequently out 
with the Amisfield hounds ; very fond of curling ; and so 
much addicted to golfing, that he generally carried a club 
in his hand; always attended the Goolan club on Satur- 
days, and often the Boglehill club on the Wednesdays. I 
am not aware that he left any metrical manuscripts. In- 


deed, I have heard him say, he would rather ride twenty 
miles than put pen to paper. When he did write he was 
extremely laconic, as witness his settlement with a person 
with whom he had long trafficked, and who insisted upon 
a systematic acquittance — " This day Andrew Hunter and 
I counted and clear'd ; deil haed he owes me, and I owe 
him as little." The elegy on the last Congalton of Con- 
galton, who was a great favourite in that part of the coun- 
try, was much admired. ' The battle of Preston,' which has, 
I presume, given rise to this investigation, contains a line 
running thus, ' The Teague was naught,' which may be 
construed into a national reflection, and I could wish that 
the word The were exchanged for This. By the bye, when 
the rifling took place on Seton sands, your grandfather was 
of the party ; and when hiring shearers a year or two after 
in Linton market, he recognised the fellow who took his 
watch, and demanded restitution. " Oh ! she dee'd that 
same night, and I gied her till a neighbour, and he's gane 
far o'er the hills, an', be Got, ye'il ne'er see her again." I 
might give instances of his sprightly repartees, &c. but am 
fearful of becoming tedious. My partial friend. Major Yule, 
on the presumption that all Adam's sons are addicted to 
rhyming, advises that I should send some specimens, and 
I have actually collected a good many — not many good — 
scraps, but only one in the Scottish dialect, and that you 
shall have ; and were I not so lame a scribe, I might perhaps 
copy out a few more. To be sure I have, from folly, or 
from vanity, or in self-defence, been at the expense of having 
some copies printed, and to these also, as they need not be 
transcribed, you are heartily welcome. In the first place, 
one of my brother's tunes, which I call the Lament, and to 
which I contributed the words ; secondly, two songs set 
by Mrs Skirving to a tune, which, upwards of threescore 
years ago, I learnt from a ploughman, who said he had 
picked it up from a travelling piper ; thirdly, a new version 
of Auld Langsyne ; fourthly, a little song in manuscript to 


the tune of, 'I'll never gae doun to the broom ony mair;' 
fifthly, a ditto to a tune which runs to some plamtive words, 
of which I do not remember a syllable ; and, lastly, dijeu 
d esprit by my Brother. Though they should all be excluded 
from the projected publication, I should like to know the 
sentence pronounced by the Committee of criticism. Per- 
haps some of your daughters will so far honour me as to 
try them upon the piano — the Lament goes best upon the 

" I have a picture of my Father in miniature by my 
Brother, and which, were I in town, I might probably put 
into the hands of some engraver or lithographer. My bro- 
ther, David, has, or had another, a very good likeness, set 
in a ring. As I have time and space I shall mention a 
peculiar faculty possessed by my Father, viz. that of making 
severe retorts without giving offence. A person boasting 
of the wonderful qualifications of his horse, said, " It has as 
good a memory as Adam Skirving." — " If, with my memory, 
it has your judgment, it must be a complete beast." 
" Yours, my dear sir, most respectfully, 

"R. Skirving." 

P. S " Lord Elcho, at the time of his marriage, re- 
sided at Beanston. My father went to make his bow — was 
introduced by his Lordship — deliberately took up the skirt 
of his coat — looked her Ladyship in the face, and, affecting 
to wipe his moo, fairly saluted her. None but himself could 
have done this without giving offence." 

As there is no " Committee of Criticism" to sit in judg- 
ment upon Captain Skirving's communications, I shall here 
add such pieces as seem to me most suitable for this work. 



Ye Lothian lairds, in sable weeds. 

With pomp the funeral grace ; 
Ye poor and bare, -who nought can spare. 

Put on a mournful face. 


For Congalton lies cold in clay, 

So much admired by all ; 
Whose pliant parts so cheered all hearts. 

He pleased both great and small. - 

A neighbour and companion dear. 

Could both be fou and wise ; 
And who, woes me, from fault is free ? — 

It was his only vice. 

Of real humour, unconflned. 

And wit, that flowed with ease. 
Of modest mind, and temper kind. 

Yet smart at repartees. 

Though keen his satire, sharp his wit. 

His words gave no oflPence ; 
What's well designed, well ta'en we find 

By every man of sense. 

A husband fond, a father kind, 

A friend quite free from gall ; 
A friend in need's a friend indeed, 

And he was so to all. 

A father to the fatherless, 

A master mild and just ; 
From what he said he never strayed, 

His promise all might trust. 

Such was his character in life ; 

When fate decreed his end 
He died in peace, and ne'er to cease. 

May bliss his shade attend. 



King, Lords and Commons, and we Rabble, 

Are just the four strings of a fiddle. 

On which the Premier of the day 

Is, nolens volens, forc'd to play. 

But as soon may he scale the moon. 
As keep the said four strings in tune. 



Like Walpole, Ministers have chosen 
To use sweet oil in place of rosin ; 
Which no doubt sav'd a world of toil. 
But soon exhausted all the oil. 

And now, the once sweet silver sound 

Is totally in discord drown'd. 

How rash a youth was Pitt, to meddle 

With such a craz'd half-rotten fiddle ! 

Not Gow himself, with nicest twitch. 

Could screw the pins to concert pitch. 

The tones, harsh, grating, shrill and loud, 
Ai'e all drawn from a tuneless Croiod.* 

Archibald Skirving the painter, the writer of the above 
lines, was a man of undoubted, but somewhat eccentric, 
genius; of whom, were this a suitable place, many character- 
istic anecdotes might be recorded. The following air, com- 
posed by him (and here accompanied with the first two 
stanzas of a song by Captain Skirving) will evince that he 
possessed no inconsiderable musical skill. 

skirving's lament. 
The Tune by Archibald, and the words by Robert Skirving. 

— ,-- i ! 







Thy rest-less Fa-ther roams once more, A 





Sol - dier to Ben - gal ; From me he flies, for- 




* 'Crowd,' signifies a fiddle, as well as a promiscuous multitude. 




'r-F— 1»— «~FsK-^l^r^ 

-j ■ '■J- 

sakes his child, De - serts his friends and all. No 







cause as - sign'd for change of mind, He 




ends at -tain. And not re - pent too late. 





Some froward fancy drives him hence. 

The cause he'll not disclose ; 
He sees my tears, he hears my sighs, 

He laughs at all my woes : 
What can't be cured must be endured, 

As time and chance befall ; 
I'll leave my child, I'll risk my life, 

To join him in Bengal. 


In the Farmer's Magazine, for August 1810, the follow- 
ing Epitaph on Mr Skirving was communicated by " A 
visiting Member of the old Gulan Club," who says, " I 
lately observed a stone stuck up to his memory in the 
Churchyard of Athelstaneford. The epitaph appeared to 
me characteristic ; I therefore transcribed it, and herewith 
send you a copy." 


DIED I 9th APRIL, 1803. 

In figure, in feature, and powers of mind. 

As perfect as most of his peers ; 
As gratefully held, as serenely resigned. 

Life's lease, which was eighty-four years. 

With low and with lofty — frank, candid, and fair ; 

Soon bargain' d, and counted, and clear'd 5 — 
On folly, and vice, and imposture, severe — 

Yet neither was hated nor fear'd. 

With health, happy wit and good-humour endow'd. 

Content in his countenance glow'd ; 
Not wishing to sow where another had plough'd, 

But trusting to reap as he sow'd. 

The following is a copy of the not less characteristic 
Inscriptions which Captain Skirving placed in the Church- 
yard of Athelstaneford, at the time probably when the above 
was removed. That upon his Brother may seem obscure to 
those who were not personally acquainted with him in his 
later years, when his peculiarities and his aversion to court 
favour, by any attempt to humour the prejudices and con- 
ceits of individuals, very materially affected his interests in 
regard to professional employment. He died at Inveresk 
on the 19th of May, 1819. 

[ *197 ] , 






His Oldest Son, ADAM, Farmer, Garleton, 

BORN, 1719 DIED, 1803. 

In feature, in figure, agility, mind. 
And happy wit rarely surpass'd, 

With lofty or low could be plain or refined. 
Content beaming bright to the last. 

His first Son, and finest Semblance, 







To beauty, virtue, talent, he would bow. 
But claims from birth or rank would not allow ; 
Kept friends and foes at nearly equal distance ; 
Knew how to give, but not to take assistance. 
At threescore-ten, when scarce begun to fail. 
He dropt at once, without apparent ail. 

The following is the character of old Mr Skirving, by 
his son Archibald, to which Captain Skirving alludes in 
the foregoing- letter : — 

*' He possessed a most comprehensive mind, retentive 


memory, ready wit, and cheerful heart. Was alive to 
praise ; of middle stature, and unmatched agility, with a 
countenance of still superior character ; and for the sim- 
plicity of his dealings, made frugality a compensation." 

In a subsequent communication with which I have been 
favoured, Captain Skirving says, " Yes, the Epitaph, in 
the Farmer's Magazine, was removed when the other was 
erected. Don't think I ever gave an opinion as to the 
author of ' Hey, Johnnie Cope.'" 

cii. (2.) 


The original ballad on the Battle of Killiecrankie, fought 
on the 17th of July, 1689, beginning ' Clavers and his 
Highlandmen,^ was printed near the time as a broadside, or 
single leaf; but the writer of it is unknown. The Latin 
version, inserted in the Musical Museum, is attributed to 
Herbert Kennedy, of Halleatts, Dumfriesshire, who was 
appointed one of the Regents, or Professors, in the Uni- 
versity of Edinburgh, in the year 1684. 


The author of this song, William Wallace, was the 
eldest son of Thomas Wallace of Cairnhill, Esq., and was 
born probably about the year 1712. He was admitted a 
member of the Faculty of Advocates 16 th of February, 
1734. His father died in April, 1748. In August, 1750, 
William Wallace of Cairnhill, advocate, married Jean, 
daughter of Archibald Campbell of Succoth, writer to the 
Signet, (Scots Magazine, 1750, p, 398.) He died at Glas- 
gow, 16th of November, 1763. He is to be distinguished 
from William Wallace jun., who was admitted advocate 
15th of February, 1752, and is described in the minutes of 
the Faculty of Advocates as the son of Robert Wallace, 
writer to the Signet, — no doubt the same as Robert Wallace 


of Holmston, Ayrshire, W. S., who died 24th of March 
1752, aged 82. In December 1752, this William Wallace 
was appointed Professor of Universal History in the Uni- 
versity of Edinburgh ; and, at the time of his death, which 
took place at Edinburgh, 28th of November, 1786, he was 
Professor of Scots Law, one of the Assessors of the City, 
and Sheriff-depute of Ayrshire. George Wallace, advocate, 
about the same time, is known as the author of " Prin- 
ciples of the Law of Scotland," " Thoughts on Feudal 
Tenures," and " Prospects from Hills in Fife." 



Alexander Robertson of Struan, Esq., the Chief of 
his Clan, died at his house of Carey, in Rannoch, Perth- 
shire, 18th of April, 1749, in the 81st year of his age. A 
posthumous collection of his poems was surreptitiously 
printed at " Edinburgh for Charles Alexander," 8vo, with- 
out date, but published in October, 1751, when it was 
announced in the Scots Magazine as being ready for subscri- 
bers, price 5s. Another edition, omitting several objection- 
able pieces attributed to him, was reprinted at Edinburgh 
(in 1785,) 12mo. This edition contains the " History and 
Martial Achievements of the Robertsons of Strowan." 



Burns, like what he has remarked of himself (see No. 
cm. p. 107), after stating that this song was Dr Blacklock's, 
adds, " He, as well as I, often gave Johnson verses, trifling 
enough perhaps, but they served as a vehicle for the mu- 


were NA my heart light I WAD DIE. 

This song appears to have been first published by Thom- 
son, in his folio Orpheus Caledonius, about 1725. It is 


included in" the fourth volume of the Tea- Table Miscel- 
lany, which was printed several years later. Lady Gri- 
SELL Home, by whom it was written, was the daughter of 
Sir Patrick Home, created Earl of Marchmont. She was 
born at Redbraes Castle, 25th of December, 1665; was 
married to George Baillie of Jarviswood, Esq., 17th of 
September, 1692; and died at London, 6th of December, 
1746, in the 81st year of her age. Their eldest daughter. 
Lady Murray of Stanhope, wrote Memoirs of the lives and 
characters of her parents — a piece of biography of the most 
affectionate and interesting kind, which cannot be too much 
praised. It was first made known by extracts, in the Ap- 
pendix to Rose's Observations on Fox's Historical Work, 
in 1809, and has since been printed entire by Thomas 
Thomson, Esq., advocate, Edinburgh, 1822, 8vo. 

Mr Pringle, editor of Constable's Edinburgh Magazine, 
discovered a fragment of a song, supposed to be the com- 
position of Lady Grisell Baillie, which he thus mentions in 
that Magazine for May, 1818 : — " An interesting notice in 
her daughter's Narrative, along with other circumstances, 
induces us to entertain a hope, that further specimens of 
her poetical talents may yet be recovered. Lady Murray 
says, ' I have now a book of songs of her writing when 
there (in Holland), many of them interrupted ; half writ ; 
some broken off in the middle of a sentence,' &c. Such a 
collection, whether altogether of her own composition or 
not, would probably afford some valuable additions to the 
lyric treasures by which Scotland has long been so pecu- 
liarly distinguished. — We are enabled to subjoin one unpub- 
lished fragment of this description, supposed to be Lady 
Grisell's composition from circumstantial evidence. It 
was lately discovered, in her handwriting, among a parcel 
of old letters, and enclosed in one of them, written about 
the time of her father's forfeiture, to her brother Patrick, 
then serving with Mr Baillie in the Prince of Orange's 
guards."— (P. 436.) 


O the ewe-bughting's bonnie, baith e'ening and morn. 
When our blythe shepherds play on their 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 ! 

O the shepherds take pleasure to blow on the horn ; 
To raise up their flocks o' sheep soon i' the morn ; 
On the bonnie green banks they feed pleasant and free — 
But, alas ! my Dear Heart ! all my sighing' s for thee ! 

These words have lately been adapted to an air composed 
by the late Charles Sharpe of Hoddam, Esq., when he was 
a youth of seven years old ; and a few copies have been 
recently engraved at his son's expense, for private distri- 
bution among his friends. 

" It appears from the scandalous ballad concerning Lady 
Murray, attributed to Lady Mary Wortley Montague, that 
Lady Grisell Baillie used the broad dialect of her country 
in speech as well as in song-writing." (C. K. S.) 


Sir John Clerk of Pennycuik, Baronet, was one of 
the Barons of Exchequer in Scotland for nearly half a 
century. He was appointed at the constitution of that 
Court, 18th of May, 1708. Along with Baron Scrope, in 
1726 he drew up an " Historical View of the Forms and 
Powers of the Court of Exchequer in Scotland," which 
was printed at the expense of the Barons of Exchequer for 
private circulation, Edinburgh, 1820, large 4to. The song 
in the Museum appeared in "The Charmer," 1751, vol. 
ii. p. 291. 

The only other verses attributed to Sir John Clerk are 
the following lines sent to a lady of great personal beauty, 
whom he courted unsuccessfully, as she became the third 
wife of Alexander, ninth earl of Eglintoune. 

• " Verses sent anonymously, with a flute, to Miss Susanna 
Kennedy, afterwards Countess of Eglintoune, by Sir John 

202 * THE MILLER. 

Clerk of Pennycook, Baronet. On attempting- to blow the 
flute, it would not sound j and, on unscrewing it, she found 
these lines : — 

" Harmonious pipe, how I envye thy bless. 

When press'd to Sylphia's lips with gentle kiss ! 

And when her tender fingers round thee move 

In soft embrace, I listen, and approve 

Those melting notes, which soothe my soul to love. 

Embalm'd with odours from her breath that flow. 

You yield your music when she's pleased to blow ; 

And thus at once the charming lovely fair 

Delights with sounds, with sweets perfumes the air. 

Go, happy pipe, and ever mindful be 

To court the charming Sylphia for me ; 

Tell all I feel — you cannot tell too much — 

Repeat my love at each soft melting touch ; 

Since I to her my liberty resign. 

Take thou the care to tune her heart to mine." 

The lady to whom these verses were sent was Susanna, 
daughter of Sir j^rchibald Kennedy of Culzean, Bart., to 
whom Allan Ramsay, in 1726, dedicated his " Gentle Shep- 
herd." The original manuscript was sent to her ladyship 
a few years later by the author, with an inscription at the 
end, stating, with some degree of vanity, that it would in 
after-times be considered no ordinary curiosity. It is pre- 
served in the library of Sir James Boswell of Auchinleck. 
Lady Eglintone, says Mr Sharpe, " was much celebrated, 
not only for her extraordinary beauty, but for a manner 
quite peculiar to herself in Scotland, and which was re- 
membered as the ' Eglintoune manner' long after her 
death." Mr John Drummond of Blair- Drummond, writes 
thus from London to his brother, William Drummond of 
Grange, in the year 1730, — " Lady Eglintoune has set out 
for Scotland, much satisfied with the honour and civilities 
shown her ladyship by the Queen and all the Royal Family ; 
she has done her country more honour than any lady I 
have seen here, both by a genteel and a prudent behaviour." 
— (C. K. S.) 


Sir John Clerk was a man of great learning and accom- 
plishments. Besides two papers in the " Philosophical 
Transactions," he was the author of a tract entitled " Dis- 
sertatio de quibusdam Monumentis Romanis," &c., written 
in 1730 and printed in 1750, 4to. For upwards of twenty- 
years he also carried on a learned correspondence with 
Roger Gale, the English antiquary, which forms a portion 
of the "Reliquiae Galeanse ;" in Nichols' " Bibliotheca 
Topographica Britannica," 1782. Sir John Clerk died at 
his seat of Pennycuik, 4th of October, 1755. One of his 
younger sons was John Clerk of Eldin, Esq., distinguished 
for his work on " Naval Tactics," and the father of the late 
Lord Eldin, an eminent Scottish lawyer. 


*' Bessy Bell and Mary Gray died of the plague, com- 
municated by their lover, in the year 1645; — see Pennant 
and the Statistical Account of Scotland. Besides the cho- 
rus, ' Oh, Bessy Bell,' &c., there is another stanza of the 
old song remembered in Perthshire — 

. " They thought to lie in Meffen kirkyard 

Among their royal kin ; 
But they maun lie on Stronach-haugh, 
To biek foment the sin." 

(C. K. S.) 


" Family traditions assert, that an amour between Anne 
Bothwell, sister of Lord Holyroodhouse, and a son of the 
Earl of Mar, Colonel Alexander Erskine, blown up in 
Dunglass Castle, 30th August, 1640, was the occasion of 
this ballad. The lady's " Lament" has exercised the subtle 
wits of antiquaries in the ascertainment of her pedigree. 
She has been made out to be the divorced Countess of 


Bothwell, and also, I believe, a Miss Boswell of Auchin- 
leck; but a passage in Father Hay's MS. History of the 
Holy roodho use Family seems to confirm the tradition be* 
yond a possibility of doubt. Recording- the children of 
Bishop Bothwell, who died 1593, he tells us, ' He had 
also a daughter, named Anna, who fell with child to a sone 
of the Earle of Marre.' Colonel Alexander's portrait, 
which belonged to his mother (now in the possession of 
James Erskine, Esq. of Cambo, Lady Mar's descendant), 
is extremely handsome, with much vivacity of counte- 
nance, dark blue eyes, a peaked beard, and moustaches. 

Ah me ! I fell, — and yet do question make. 
What I should do again for such a sake. 


" (From Notes to the Household Book of the Countess 
of Mar.) 

" The lovers were cousins ; seeing that the Bishop of 
Orkney, Anna Bothwell's father, married a daughter of 
John Murray of Touchadam, by Janet, a daughter of the 
Lord Erskine." 

" In Broom's comedy of the Northern Lass, printed 
1632, Constance' sings a fragment of this song, which I 
have not found verbatim in any of the entire copies : — 

Peace, wayward barne ! — Oh, cease thy moan ! 
Thy farre more wayward daddy's gone ; 
And never will recalled be 
By cryes of either thee or me : 

For should wee cry 

Until we dye. 
Wee could not scant his cruelty. 

Ballow, hallow, &c. 

He needs might in himselfe foresee. 
What thou successively might'st be ; 
And could hee then (though me foregoe) 
His infant leave, ere hee did know 


How like the dad 
Would be the lad. 
In time, to make fond maydens glad. 

Ballow, ballow," &c. 

" In the same play the songs — ' A bonny bonny bird I 
had,' and ' I wo' not goe to't, nor I mun not goe to't,' are 
evidently Scottish." (C. K. S.) 


This very original humorous Song appears to have been 
first printed in Ramsay's Tea- Table Miscellany, Vol. II., 
about the year 1725, and reprinted in Thomson's Orpheus, 
Vol. II., in 1733. What Mr S., therefore, means by 
Ramsay's judicious alterations, I do not know, as both 
copies are literally the same. In Ramsay,'s, it is signed 
W. W. ; and it has been attributed, I should think upon 
no good authority, to a William Walkinshaw of that 
Ilk. Except a younger son, of whom nothing is known, 
no person of that name occurs in the genealogical ac- 
counts of the family. Mr George Thomson, in print- 
ing this Song in his collection, says, *' It is mentioned in 
the memoranda of Burns, that this Song was written upon 
Walkinshaw of Walkinshaw, near Paisley. 'Tis said, 
however, by others, that the hero was Hamilton of Gil- 
bertfield." This last is certainly the most probable conjec- 
ture ; if William Hamilton of Gilbertfield himself was not 
actually the writer of the Song. 

William Hamilton of Gilbertfield, Lanarkshire, was 
the second son of Captain William Hamilton of Ladyland, 
and was born probably before the year 1680. Having early 
embraced a military life, he was " distinguished during his 
latter days by the title of The Lieutenant." His chief dis- 
tinction, however, was his genius for humorous Scottish 
verse, as exemplified in his contributions to the first 
poetical collection published in this country, entitled, '' A 


Choice Collection of Scots Poems," by James Watson, 
Edinb. 1706, 8vo, and of which two additional parts ap- 
peared in 1709 and IT 11. In 1719, when residing at Gil- 
bertfield on half-pay, Hamilton addressed a complimentary 
poetical epistle to Allan Ramsay, in the vernacular dialect, 
in which he designates himself " Wanton Willie." This 
opened a rhyming correspondence ; and, when Ramsay in- 
cluded their mutual epistles in his poetical works, he tells 
us, that Hamilton " held his commission honourably in 
my Lord Hyndford's regiment ;" and adds, 

And may the stars, wha shine aboon, 

Wi' honour notice real merit ; 
Be to my friend auspicious soon. 

And cherish aye sae fine a spirit. 

Three years later, Hamilton of Gilbertfield published at 
Glasgow, by subscription, " The Life of Sir William Wal- 
lace;" an injudicious attempt, by adopting the vulgar dia- 
lect, to add to the popularity of the fine national poem of 
the Blind Minstrel. That Allan Ramsay, in publishing 
his Tea- Table Miscellany, in 1724, would apply to Hamil- 
ton for assistance we may safely conclude ; but none of his 
contributions have been identified. Still I am inclined, to 
believe, that the initials W. W. attached to this most ori- 
ginal Song, " Willie was a wanton wag'^ indicate no other 
person than " The Lieutenant," under his other designa- 
tion " Wanton Willie." Some verses, in which he is so 
styled, on the death of Lord William Hamilton (11th of 
July, 1734), will be found at page *110 of these Illustra- 
tions. Hamilton afterwards removed to Letterick, in La- 
narkshire, where he died at an advanced age, 24th of 
May, 1751. 


" This fragment of the old song is Burns's ground- 
work : — 

JUMPIN' JOHN. * 207 

Her daddy forbad, her minnie forbad, 

Forbidden she wadna be — 
The lang lad they ca' Jumpin' John 

Beguil'd our bonnie Bessie." — (C. K. S.) 

The Rev. George R. Gleig, in his " Family History of 
England," vol. ii. p. 110, has introduced an air, respecting 
which he says, " This piece of music is the air which was 
played by the band at Fotheringay Castle while Mary was 
proceeding to her execution. The air itself is a very touch- 
ing one; and appears, from its extreme simplicity, well- , 
fitted for the rude instruments which were then in use. A 


fortunate accident threw a copy of it in my way, and I have | 
inserted it, because I see no reason to doubt the tradition 
which connects it with this period in English history." — 
Had the reverend gentleman observed, that the occasion on 
which the air is said to have been performed was " a very 
touching one," he would, have been so far correct ; but the 
air itself is nothing more than the tune of " Joan's Placket" / 

arranged as a march. See p. 50. of Mr Chappell's " Na- ^ 
tional English Airs," published at London, 1838. In addi- 
tion to this circumstance, as to the identity of the air, it 
may be added, that none of the contemporary accounts of / 
our unfortunate Queen's execution say one word as to any 
funeral procession or any piece of music having been per- 
formed on the occasion. 


" The old words of this song are — 

Dusty was his coat. 

Dusty was his colour. 
Dusty was the kiss 

That I gat frae the miller. 

Hey the dusty, &c."— (C. K. S.) 



The English lady was Mrs Walter Riddell ; born at 
Woodley. She was sister of Mrs Banks, wife of the M.P. 
of that name; and left England in April, 1788, to visit 
her father who was Governor of the Caribbee Islands. On 
her return, which was soon after her marriage with Captain 
Riddell, she published a volume, " Voyages to the Ma- 
deira and Leeward Caribbean Isles : with Sketches of the 
Natural History of these Islands. By Maria R***«**." 
Edinb. 1792, l-2mo, dedicated to Mr William Smellie. She 
died at London, in 1812. 


thro' the wood, laddie. 
" Ramsay's verses were said to have been composed on 
an amour of the Honourable Alexander Murray, son of 
Alexander, fourth Lord Elibank. His political conduct 
displayed a firmness which was much extolled by the mem- 
bers of his own party." — (C. K. S.) 



" The period when this tragedy took place is quite 
uncertain, though Stewart Lewis, in the preface to his 
poem of Fair Helen, attempts to settle it. As he resided 
long in the vicinity of Kirkconnel, and consequently was 
well versed in the details illustrative of the ballad, his 
preface, which was printed at Aberdeen, 1796, is here 
given verbatim. 

" ' Helen Irving, a young lady of extraordinary beauty 
and uncommon qualifications, was descended from the 
ancient and respectable family of Kirkconnel, in Annan- 
dale, at present in the possession of Sir William Maxwell 
of Springhall, Baronet. 


" ' She had for some time been courted by two gentlemen, 
whose names were Bell and Fleeming. Bell was proprie- 
tor of Blackwood-house, " properly Blacket-house ; " and 
Fleeming of Fleeming-hall, situate near Mossknow, at pre- 
sent in the possession of Captain Graham. 

" ' Bell one day told the young lady, that if he at any 
time afterwards found her in Fleeming's company, he 
would certainly kill him. She, however, had a greater 
regard for Fleeming ; and being one day walking along 
with him on the pleasant romantic banks of the Kirtle, she 
observed his rival on the other side of the river amongst 
the bushes. Conscious of the danger her lover was in, she 
passed betwixt him and his enemy, who, immediately 
firing, shot her dead, whilst she leaped into Fleeming's 
arms, whom she endeavoured to screen from the attempts 
of his antagonist. He drew his sword, crossed the river, 
and cut the murderer in pieces. A cairn or heap of stones 
was raised on the place where she fell, as a common memo- 
rial in similar incidents from the earliest times among Celtic 
colonies, and continues over Scotland to this day. She 
was buried in the adjacent churchyard of Kirkconnel ; and 
the poor, forlorn, disconsolate Fleeming, overwhelmed with 
love, and oppressed with grief, is said to have gone abroad 
for some time ; — returned, visited her grave, upon which 
he stretched himself and expired, and was buried in the 
same place. On the tomb-stone that lies over the grave, 
are engraven a cross with a sword, and " Hie jacet Adam 
Fleeming," cut on the stone alongst the north side of the 
cross. Although at present there is not a person to be 
found in that part of the country of the sirname of Fleeming, 
yet the parish annexed to Kirkconnel still retains the name 
of Kirkpatrick Fleeming. At what time the proprietors of 
this name failed in the parish of Kirkpatrick Fleeming, is 
not known ; and as there is no date upon the stone above 
mentioned, the precise time of this event cannot be deter- 
mined. It only seems highly probable either to have ter- 
minated in the reign of King James V., or to have ushered 


in that of the unfortunate Queen Mary ; for it is commonly 
said that fair Helen was aunt to Margaret of Hoddam, who 
was married to Carruthers of Holmains, to whom she had 
a daughter, also named Helen, who was married to Ronald 
Bell of Gosebridge (now Scotsbridge) ; and by the tomb- 
stone of Helen Carruthers, in Middlebie churchyard, it 
appears that she died in 1626 ; so that she, who died in 
1626, may, without any stretch of chronology, be granted 
(grand) niece to her who lived in the beginning of Queen 
Mary's reign.' 

" This statement is not confirmed by the pedigree of the 
Holmains family, very fully made out by Dr Clapperton 
of Lochmaben ; but such traditions are generally found to 
contain a considerable degree of truth. 

" As the original ballad has been interpolated, and often 
murdered more barbarously than its theme, I subjoin the 
genuine words, which I have heard sung hundreds of times 
in Annandale, but never with any additional verses. I have 
endeavoured to spell the words as the singers pronounced 



I WISH I war where Eelin lies. 
For nicht and day on me she cries : 
I wish I war where Eelin lies, 
On fair Kirkconnel lee. 

Curse on the hand that shot the shot. 
Likewise the gun that gae the crack ; 
Fair Eelin in my arms scho lap. 
And diet for love of me. 


think na ye my heart was sair 
To see her lie, and speak na mair ! 
There did scho swoon, wi' mickle care. 

On fair Kirkconnel lee. 


1 loutit down, my sword did draw ; 
I cuttit him in pieces sma' ; 

I cuttit him in pieces sma' 
On fair Kirkconnel lee. 



Eelin fair, without compare, 
I'll mack a garland of thy hair. 
And wear the same for evermair, 

Untill the day I dee. 


1 wish my grave war growin' green, 
A winding-sheet put o'er my een, 
And I in Eelin's arms lyin' 

On fair Kirkconnel lee. 


Eelin chast, thou wast modest ; 
War I with thee, I wad be blest ; 
Where thou lies low, and tacks thy rest 

On fair Kirkconnel lee. 


1 wish I war where Eelin lies. 

For nicht and day on me scho cries ; 
I wish I war where Eelin lies. 
On fair Kirkconnel lee. 

" The air to which these verses were sung, was totally 
different from that usually printed, as well as the newer 
edition by Mr Stenhouse."— (C. K. S.) 



The description of Wood's MS. given by Mr S. is not 
correct ; and the lines quoted occur in a portion evidently 
written at a much later date than 1566. See afterwards 
the additional note to Song cccclxvi. 


This Song appeared in the second volume of Ramsay's 
Tea-Table Miscellany. When Mr S. therefore says, " I 
have heard it attributed to Sir Gilbert Elliot of Minto, 
Bart., but have not been able to discover upon what autho- 
rity," we may safely conclude it was no sufficient authority, 


inasmuch as Sir Gilbert was not three years of age when it 
was published by Allan Ramsay, in 1724 or 1725. 

Burns was mistaken in supposing the town or castle 
of Dumbarton was here meant. See Chambers's Songs, 
vol. i. p. 59, 



Alexander, Fourth Duke of Gordon, to whom Mr 

S. refers as the writer of this popular and humorous Song, 

was born in the year 1743, and died 17th of January, 1827, 

in the 84th year of his age. 

In the note to this Song, Mr Stenhouse has inserted 
some verses to this favourite tune, which were composed by 
the late William Reid, bookseller, Glasgow. Having 
been favoured by Mr James Brash of Glasgow (through 
the kind application of Mr P. A. Ramsay) with some par- 
ticulars of Mr Reid's history, I take this opportunity of 
inserting them, as a tribute of respect to his memory. He 
was remarkable for a fund of social humour, and was pos- 
sessed of no inconsiderable poetical powers, with some of 
the eccentricities occasionally allied to genius. 

Mr Reid was born at Glasgow on the 10th of April, 
1764. His parents were Robert Reid, baker in Glasgow, 
and Christian Wood, daughter of a farmer, at Gartmore, 
in Perthshire. Having received a good education in his 
native city, he was originally employed in the type-foundery 
of Mr Andrew Wilson, and afterwards served an appren- 
ticeship with Messrs Dunlop and Wilson, booksellers in 
Glasgow. He remained in their employment till the 
year 1790, when he commenced business as a bookseller, 
in partnership with the late Mr James Brash ; and, for a 
period of twenty-seven years, they carried on a most 


respectable business, under the well-known firm of " Brash 
and Reid." In a small publication, which they issued in 
numbers, at one penny each, under the title of " Poe- 
try, Original and Selected," between the years 1795 and 
1798, and which forms four volumes, there are several 
contributions of Mr Reid. Most of his compositions were 
of an ephemeral kind, and it is to be regretted that no selec- 
tion of them has ever appeared. He died at Glasgow, 29th 
of November, 1831, leaving a widow, Elizabeth, daughter 
of Mr James Henderson, linen printer, Newhall, and two 
sons and five daughters. A notice of Mr Reid, by some 
friendly hand, appeared in the Scots Times, soon after his 
death, from which the following is an extract : — 

" In early and mature life, Mr William Reid was also 
remarkable both for vivacity, and no mean share of that 
peculiar talent which, in Scotland, the genius of Burns and 
its splendid and dazzling course seemed to call forth in the 
minds of many of his admiring countrymen. He not only 
shared in the general enthusiasm the appearance of that 
day-star of national poetry elicited — but participated in his 
friendship, and received excitement from his converse. In 
Scottish song, and in pieces of characteristic humour, Mr 
Reid, in several instances, approved himself not unworthy 
of either such intimacy or inspiration. These are chiefly 
preserved in a collection, entitled ' Poetry, Original and 
Selected,' which appeared under the tasteful auspices of his 
still surviving and venerable friend, and then partner, as 
well as his own. It is now scarce, but highly valued, inde- 
pendently of that circumstance. Even, however, when it 
shall have altogether ceased to be known but to collectors, 
many of the simple and beautiful lines of Mr Reid's earlier 
compositions, and racy, quaint, and original thoughts and 
expressions of his riper years will cling to the general 
memory. Perhaps, of these, the humorous will be the long- 
est lived." 

Mr Motherwell, in his edition of Burns, inserts a Mo- 


nody on the Death of the Ayrshire Bard, by Mr Reid, who, 
he says, " was a most enthusiastic admirer of Burns, pos- 
sessed a rich fund of native humour, and was the author of 
several poems in our vernacular dialect that merit preserva- 
tion." (vol. V. p. 282.) 

I may also take, this opportunity of adding a few words 
respecting his partner, Mr James Brash. He was born at 
Glasgow, 1st of January, 1758, and was successively an 
apprentice or in the employment of the celebrated Foulises, 
printers, of Robert Macnair, bookbinder, and James Dun- 
can, bookseller, until he entered into partnership with Mr 
Reid, as already stated, in 1790. He contributed several 
pieces to the Glasgow periodicals, between 1782 and 1787, 
but being of a retired disposition, he never affixed his name 
to any of them. It is believed that the collection of " Poe- 
try, Original and Selected," above alluded to, also contain- 
ed two or three pieces of his composition. As a man of bu- 
siness, he was highly esteemed for personal respectability, 
strict integrity, and attention. He died at Glasgow on the 
9th of October, 1835. 


The lady. Miss Jean Drummond, to whom this song re- 
lates, was married, as second wife, to James Duke of Atholl, 
7th of June, 1749. She survived the Duke, and also her se- 
cond husband, Lord Adam Gordon, and died 22d February, 
1795. Mr Sharpe says, " There is a portrait of this fickle 
Duchess at Abercairney ; any thing but beautiful." The 
author of the song, was Adam Austin, M.D., Physician in 
Edinburgh, who, as stated in Mr Stenhouse's note, survived 
his disappointment. His marriage is thus noticed in the 
Edinburgh Evening Courant, 17th September, 1754, — 
" Last night was married Miss Anne Sempill, sister of the 
Right Hon. John Lord Sempill, to Dr Adam Austin." This 
lady survived her husband nearly twenty years. Dr Austin 


died 28th November, 1774, and his wife 27th November, 
1793. The song is printed in " The Charmer," Vol. II. 
p. 7. Edinburgh: 1751. Burns says, " The country girls 
in Ayrshire, instead of the line. 

She me forsook for a great Duke, 

For AthoU's duke she me forsook ; 

which I take to be the original reading." 

The title of the old tune, as it occurs in a MS. dated 
1692, in the possession of Mr Blaikie, Paisley, is, " For 
lake of gold she left me." Oswald altered it to, " she lost 
me, O." 


Mr Stenhouse, as well as others, has fallen into error in 
supposing that because the names of particular tunes occur 
in some of the older MSS., this indicates that the airs are 
similar with those now commonly known under the same 
titles. The air " Hey now the Day daws," has been 
usually considered as the original of " Hey, Tuttie, Tattie;" 
and it has been assigned upon no better grounds than 
mere conjecture, or idle tradition, to the age of Robert the 
Bruce. The old air, " The Day daws," is fortunately 
preserved in Gordon of Straloch's Lute Book, 1627, but 
it is quite different from the air in question, so well known 
from its being allied to Burns's noble words, " Scots wlia JioUe 
wi' Wallace hied" See the additional note to song dlxxvii. 
in vol. vi. of this Work. 

The kind of hunting song, which Mr Stenhouse has 
printed at p. 103, cannot be regarded as the original words 
of the song or air to which Dunbar and Douglas allude, at 
the beginning of the sixteenth century. It has been pre- 
served in a MS. collection of the miscellaneous Poems of 
Alexander Montgomery, the author of " The Cherrie and 


the Slae," and was undoubtedly written by him, perhaps not 
earlier than 1580. He was a younger son of Montgomery 
of Haslehead in Ayrshire, and was born probably about the 
middle of the sixteenth century. He was distinguished at 
least as early as 1584 for his poetical genius. See the col- 
lected edition of his Poems, Edinburgh, 1821, post 8vo. 

" In former times another hunting song to this ^ir, 
enumerating several of the smaller lairds of the district, was 
common in Annandale — from the name of the dog last men- 
tioned, it must be pretty ancient : — 

bridekirk's hunting. 

The cock's at the crawing. 
The day's at the dawing. 
The cock's at the crawing. 
We're o'er lang here. 

Bridekirk's hunting, 

Bridekirk's hunting, 

Bridekirk's hunting, 

The morn, an' it be fair. 

There's Bridekirk and Brackenwhat, 
Limekilns and Thorniewhat, 
Dormont and Murray what, 
An' a' will be there. 

Bi'idekirk's, &c. 

There's Gingler and Jowler, 
Tingler and Towler, 
Thy dog and my dog. 
And a' will be there. 

Bridekirk's, &c. 

Fie, rin Nipsy, 
Fie, rin Nipsy, 
Fie, rin Nipsy, 

Thou gangs near the hare. 

Bridekirk's, &c. 


But bonny Nipatatie, 
But bonny Nipatatie, 
But bonny Nipatatie, 

Thou grips the wylie hare. 

Bridekirk's, &c. 

" In Beaumont and Fletcher's ' Knight of the Burning 
Pestle,' the lady says to Ralph — 

Oft have I heard of your brave countrymen 
And fertile soil, and store of wholesome food ; 
My father oft will tell me of a drink 
In England found, and Nipitato call'd. 
Which driveth all the sorrow from your hearts." 

(C. K. S.) 



Tune — Fourteenth of October. 

Burns, in his note to this song, says, " The title of this 
air shows that it alludes to the famous King Crispian, the 
patron of the honourable corporation of shoemakers. St 
Crispian's day falls on the fourteenth of October, old style, 
as the old proverb says — 

On the fourteenth of October 
Was ne'er a sutor sober." 

The stately procession of King Crispian, was formerly wont 
every third year to interest and amuse the inhabitants of 



This well-known ballad was printed, probably for the 
first time, in the Tea- Table Miscellany, Vol. IV., about 
the year 1733. 

'' There is, or was, much of this song remembered in 
Ayrshire, which never has been printed. Some stanzas go 
to prove that the lady was restored to her husband, unsul- 


lied by a gipsy embrace ; which seems to have been the 
case, if she really was the person to whom tradition hath 
ascribed this false step. It has been always asserted that 
her maiden name was Hamilton ; now, there were only 
two ladies of that name married into the Cassillis family. 
Lady Jean Hamilton, daughter of the Earl of Haddington, 
and Lady Susan, daughter of the Duke of Hamilton, That 
the latter countess could not be the fugitive, is certain from 
dates ; though the picture pointed out at Culzean as that 
of the fair delinquent, and engraved in Constable's Maga- 
zine, is certainly a portrait of her ; and for the other, I 
have been assured that, in the Haddington family, no such 
anecdote respecting John Faa was ever known. Moreover, 
there is an original letter written by her husband, shortly 
after her death, to the Rev. Mr Douglas, preserved in the 
Wodrow Collection of MSS., which expresses a tenderness 
very improbable in such a case. It is subjoined for the 
reader's consideration : — 

" ' For the Right Reverend Mr Robert Douglas, 
Minister at Edinburgh. 

" « Right Reverend, 

" ' I finde it so hard to digest the want of a deare 
friend, suche as my beloved yoke-fellow was, that I thinke 
it will muche affect the heart of her sister, my Ladie Car- 
neghie, q° had beene bothe a sister and a mother to her, 
after there mother's removall. I thoght your hand, as 
having relation to bothe, fit for presenting suche a potion, 
seing you can prepare her before hand, if as yet it have not 
come to her eares ; and howsoever it bee, your help in com- 
forting may be very useful! to her. My losse is great, bot 
to the judgement of us q^ beheld the comfortible close of 
her dayes, shee hes made a glorious and happie change, 
manifesting in her speeches bothe a full submission to the 
onelie absolute Soveraine, and a sweet sense of his presence 


in mercie, applying to her selfe manie comfortable passages 
of God's worde, and closing with those last words, when I 
asked q*^ she was doing ; her answer was, shee was longing 
to goe home. It seemes the Lorde hes beene preparing 
her these manie weiks past, for shee had bene sicklie four 
or fyve weekes, and the meanes which had helped others in 
her estate, and were thoght in likelihoode infallible, could 
not bee used ; I meane, drawing of blood : for tho' the 
surgeon trayed it, he could never hit on the veine. I am, 

your most affectionat friend, 

' Cassillis.' 
' Cassillis, Uth Dec. 1642.' 

" Mr Douglas, to whom this letter was addressed, was 
said to be a descendant of Mary, Queen of Scots, from an 
amour she had with the youth who contrived her escape 
from Lochleven. Bishop Burnet alludes to this silly piece 
of scandal. Where the unlucky Queen, in all her hurries 
and imprisonments, could contrive to drop such a proof of 
her incontinence, must now be a prodigious puzzle to her 
greatest enemies. During the Covenanting times, how- 
ever, this fable was pretended to be believed. 

"It is said that Lady Cassillis, in her confinement, 
wrought with her needle, by way of penance one may pre- 
sume, a representation of her elopement with the gipsies. 
This piece is still preserved at Culzean ; but I suspect, 
from what I have heard, that it is only a fragment of old 
tapestry, representing a man and woman riding on a white 
horse, amid a group of attendants, and re-baptized by house- 
keepers, who have heard the old tradition. I remember 
well that, many years ago, a portrait of Lady Sunderland, 
Waller's Saccharissa, used to be pointed out in the Duke 
of Hamilton's apartment in the Abbey, as the Lady Cas- 
sillis who eloped with Faa. There can be no doubt about 
that picture ; while the legend once attached to it supports 
the tradition, that the frail Countess of Cassillis was in some 
shape or other a Hamilton." — (C. K. S.) 

220 * ABSENCE. 



In the note to this son^, p. 177, Mr S. says, that the 
song, " with the tune to which it is set in the Museum, 
was written and composed, in 1787, by Dr Blacklock, and 
by him presented to Johnson, for the second volume of that 
work." It was written and composed many years previously, 
as both the song and air, under Blacklock's name, appeared 
in the Edinburgh Magazine and Review, for February, 
1774, (vol. i. p. 254.) 


This song, as well as the " Address to a Blackbird," 
No. CXC. was written by Agnes Craig, Mrs M'Lehose, 
the lady with whom Burns, in the year 1789, corresponded 
under the assumed names of Sylvander and Clarinda ; and 
who still survives, in the 79th year of her age. She was 
cousin-german to Lord Craig, one of the Senators of the 
College of Justice ; and was born in the same year with the 
poet, whose admiration has conferred on her so much cele- 
brity. From No. 8 of Burns's letters to Clarinda, it appears 
that the concluding lines to this song were supplied by him- 
self to suit the music. He remarks that " The latter half 
of the first stanza would have been worthy of Sappho. I 
am in raptures with it." 


A SONG in seven stanzas of six lines, besides the burden, 
beginning — 

" When we went to the field of war. 
And to the weaponshaw, Willie." 

appeared in " The Charmer," 2d edition, 1752, vol. i. p. 
61. It has the initials B. G. as the author. 

UP AND WAR THEM A'. * 221 

In Kay's Edinburgh Portraits, vol. i. p. 230 of the new 
edition, there is a likeness of Thomas Neill, the precentor 
in the Old Church of Edinburgh, who is mentioned by Mr 
S. in his note, at p. 179. It was done about the year 1786, 
and represents Neill singing, in character, one of his favourite 
songs, — " The Old Wife." In the above work there is a 
detailed account of Neill, who died at Edinburgh, 7th of 
December, 1800, aged about seventy years. 


" This song (says Mr George Thomson), was written 
by Burns on Miss Jeany Cruickshank, now Mrs Hender- 
son, Jedburgh, daughter of one of the masters of the High 
School, Edinburgh, a friend of the bard." 

The composer of the air, and himself a writer of verses, 
as noticed by Mr S. at p. 180, was David Sillar, a native 
of Ayrshire. He was born in the neighbourhood of Tarbol- 
ton, in the year 1760, and died at Irvine, 2d of May, 1830. 
He published a volume of Poems at Kilmarnock in 1789, 
8vo., pp. 247. For an account of Sillar's life and writings, 
see the '* Ayrshire Contemporaries of Burns," Edinburgh, 
1839. 8vo. 



See the preceding note, clxxxvi. — In addition to that 
note, it may be mentioned that Burns' " Letters to Cla- 
rinda" were first surreptitiously printed at Glasgow in 1802, 
12mo; while the following extract from, a recent edition 
of Burns' Works, by Mr R. Chambers, explains the origin 
of the correspondence. " In December 1787, the Poet 
became acquainted with Mrs M'Lehose, a young, beau- 
tiful, and talented woman, residing with an infant family 
in Edinburgh, while her husband was pushing his fortune 
in the West Indies. She first met the Poet in the house 
of a common friend in Alison's Square, Potterrow, at tea. 
The sprightly and intelligent character of the lady made a 


powerful impression on the Poet, and she was, in turn, 
pleased to meet a man of such extraordinary genius. A 
friendship of the intellect and the more refined sentiments 
took place between them, and gave rise to a series of let- 
ters from Burns, of a peculiarly ardent and eloquent charac- 
ter, which afterwards found their way unauthorized into 
print, through the imprudence of a friend of the lady." 


This air occurs in a MS. collection, dated 1692, belong- 
ing to Mr Blaikie, Paisley, and is called " Jock the Laird's 


For Mrs Meiklejohn, in Mr S.'s note, read Mrs M'Le- 
hose. See above. 

cromlet's lilt. 

" Mr S. gives the history of this song from Mr Ty tier's 
communication to Mr Riddell, preserved by Burns, and 
printed by Cromek ; but he omits the concluding notice — 
' N.B. Marg. Murray, mother to these thirty-one children, 
was daughter to Murray, one of the seventeen sons of Tul- 
lybardine, and whose youngest son, commonly called the 
tutor of Ardoch, died in the year 1715, aged 111 years.' 

" The following curious document concerning the seven- 
teen brothers, has never been printed : it is indorsed, ' The 
Declaration of George Halley, concerning the Laird of 
Tullybardine's seventeen sons — 1710.' 

"At Tullibardine, the twenty-fifth day of April, one 
thousand, seven hundred and ten years ; the declaration of 
George Halley, in Ochterarder, what he can say of the 
family of Tullibardine. 

cromlet's lilt. * 223 

" That the mother of the seventeen brethren was a 
daughter of Colquhoun of Luss, and that her arms are with 
the arms of TuUibardine, on the end of the chappie, being 
a ragged cross which fills the shield. 

" He says, that one of the Lairds of TuUibardine had 
seventeen sons with the said daughter of Colquhoun of 
Luss, who lived all to be men ; and that they waited all one 
day upon their father at Stirling, to attend the King, with 
each of them one servant, and their father two. This hap- 
pening shortly after an act was made by King James the 
Fifth, discharging any persons to travel with great num- 
bers of attendants beside their own family, and having chal- 
lenged the laird of TuUibardine for breaking the said act, 
he answered, he brought only his own sons, with their 
necessary attendants ; with which the King was so well 
pleased, that he gave them small lands in heritage. 

" The said George Halley also declares^ that the said 
Laird of TuUibardine gave to each of his seventeen sons 
some little lands in heritage, and that 

"1. The eldest son succeeded his father. 

" 2. The second son was killed entering in at Ochtertyre's 
house, as he was making his escape from the Drummonds, 
with whom they were at feud, he being single, and severals 
of them pursuing him. 

" 3. The third son got the lands of Strowan, of whom 
the family of Strowan is come. 

"4. The fourth son, as he thinks, got the lands of Tib- 
bermore and Kildennie, which lies under Endermay. 

" 5. A son of this family was knighted, and made one of 
the Lords of the Council and Session. 

"6. Another son married a daughter of the Earl of 
Gowrie's, who leaped the maiden leap at Hunting Tower,* 

* " The anecdote alluded to is thus told by Pennant : — ' A daughter 
of the first Earl of Gowrie was addressed by a young gentleman in 
the neighbourhood, much her inferior in rank and fortune; her family, 
though they gave no countenance to the match, permitted him to visit 

224 * crgmlet's lilt, 

and is buried in the church of Tibbermore, over against the 
pulpit, on the inside of the wall of the kirk, where her name 
and her husband's name are. 

*' 7. Another got the lands of North Kinkell. 

" 8. Another got the lands of Ardbenie, of whom David 
Murray of Ardbenie is come. 

"9. Another of the seventeen brothers got the lands of 

" 10. Another got the lands of Coug. 

"11. Another got Craigten, which belong now to Och- 

"12. Another got the lands of Catteranoch, now called 

them, and lodged him in a tower near another, in which was the young 
lady's chamber, but up a different staircase, and communicating with 
another part of the house. The lady, before the communicating doors 
were shut, conveyed herself into her lover's apartment : but some one 
of the family having discovered it, told it to her mother, who, cutting 
off, as she thoug*ht, all possibility of retreat, hastened to surprise them : 
but the young lady hearing the well-known footsteps of her mother 
hobbling up stairs, ran to the top of the leads, and taking a desperate 
leap of nine feet four inches, over a chasm *of sixty feet from the 
ground, lighted on the battlements of the other tower, whence, de- 
scending into her own chamber, she crept into her bed. Her mother 
having in vain sought for her in her lover's chamber, came into her 
room, where finding her seemingly asleep, she apologised for her un- 
just suspicion. The young lady eloped the next night, and was mar- 
ried. The top of the towers from and to which the lady leaped, are 
still shown under the appellation of the Maiden's Leap." 

'' This story was sometimes differently told : fear of an enraged father, 
with a drawn sword in his hand, being assigned as the reason of the 
lady's leap. An anecdote of the same kind, but still more wonderful, 
was formerly current in Annandale, respecting the old Tower of Com- 
longan. There, it was said, a rash young gentlewoman being surprised 
in similar circumstances, her father, as the old people expressed it, coming 
' rampagin up the turnpike like onie wud bear, wi' a nakit swurd in 
his nieve,* she ran to the top of the castle, and leaping down to the 
ground, got entrance at the front door, and was in her bed before her 
sire could descend from the battlements. The feline Venus of the Egyp- 
tians certainly proved propitious to those vaulting damsels. Alas, that 
she was so cruel to the chaster maid of Orleans, whose true leap from 
the battlements of Beaurevoir was unbroken by the pinions of Cupid, 
and almost cost her her life !" (C. K. S.) 


Ferntown. The heirs sold it to Humphrey Murray, bro- 
ther to Humphrey Murray of Buehandy, who sold it again 
to Mr James Murray, minister at Logierait. 

"13. Another got the lands of Carshead; who were such 
fighting men, they were obliged to sell their estates and go 
to Ireland. 

" 14. Another got the lands of Drimmie, in the parish 
of Foules. 

"15. Another got the lands of Kintocher, in the parish 
of Foules, being four chalder of victual. 

" 16. Another got the lands of Pitmanie. 

"17. Another of the seventeen brethren being the Duke 
of Lennox's Chamberlain at Methven ; his successor married 
the heirs of Buehandy, of whom the family of Buehandy is 

" George Halley says, that Sir William Murray of Tul- 
libardine, having broke Argyle's face with the hilt of his 
sword, in King James the Sixth's presence, was obliged to 
leave the kingdom. After, the King's mails and slaughter 
cows was not paid, neither could any subject in the realm 
be able to compel those who were bound to pay them ; 
upon which the King cried out — ' O, if I had Will Murray 
again, he would soon get my maills and slaughter cows ;' 
to which one standing by replied — ' That if his Majesty 
would not take Sir William Murray's life, he might return 
shortly.' To which the King answered — ' He would be 
loath to take his life, for he had not another subject like 
him.' Upon which promise Sir William Murray returned, 
and got a commission from the King to go to the North, 
and lift up the maills and the cows; which he speedily 
didj to the great satisfaction of the King, so that imme- 
diately after he was made Lord Comptroller. Sir William 
Murray, my Lord Comptroller's father, being in the wars." 

" This account does not tally with th6 common Scottish 
Peerages, nor with Nisbet's account of the Athol family ; 

226 * " cromlet's lilt. 

in which, however, he mentions the tradition of the seven- 
teen sons {Si/st. of Heraldry, vol. ii. p. 197.)" — (C.K.S.) 



Cromek found the first eight lines of this song among 
Burns's MSS. ; and he published it as a " Fragment" by 
the Ayrshire bard, obviously unaware that the entire song 
had been previously included in the present work. 









This song was written by the late Reverend John Skinner, 
minister of the Episcopal Chapel at Longside, near Peter- 
head. The author, in his letter to Mr Burns, says, that this 
song was squeezed out of" him by a brother parson in the 
Duchess of Gordon's neighbourhood, to accommodate a new 
Highland reel for the Marquis of Huntly's birth-day. 

Mr Skinner was born at Balfour in the parish of Birse, 
Aberdeenshire, on the Sd of October 1721. At a very early 
period he displayed an uncommon genius in acquiring a know- 
ledge of the Latin, Greek, and other languages. When only 
thirteen years old, he appeared as a candidate at the annual 
competition in the Marischal College of Aberdeen, and gain- 
ed a considerable bursary, which he enjoyed during the usual 
period of four sessions in that university. Having finished 
his academical studies, he was employed as a teacher of youth 
till November 1742, when the congregation of Episcopalians 
at Longside unanimously chose him to be their pastor. The 
duties of this sacred office he discharged from that period till 
his death, with such affectionate care and tender solici- 
tude, as endeared him, almost beyond example, to his whole 
flock. Mr Skinner died on the 16th of June 1807, in the 
86th year of his age. He was the author of an "^ Eccle- 
siastical History of Scotland," and of some poems, and seve- 
ral excellent songs, chiefly in the Scottish language, which 
were published in one volume after his decease, with a bio- 



graphical sketch of the author''s Hfe prefixed by the editor. 
Mr Skinner was an eminent scholar, a faithful and pious mi- 
nister, and a most worthy and honest man. 

The tune to which Mr Skinner's verses are adapted in the 
Museum, is called " The Marquis of Huntly's Reel," 
which was composed by the late Mr William Marshall, butler 
to the Duke of Gordon. Mr Marshall played the violin very 
prettily, and composed several other excellent strathspey and 
reel tunes. Burns, after giving it as his opinion, that Marshall 
was the first (i.e. best) composer of strathspeys of the age, 
says, " I have been told by somebody, who had it of 
Marshall himself, that he took the idea of his three most ce- 
lebrated pieces, " The Marquis of Huntly"'s Reel,'" his 
" Farewell,"" and " Miss Admiral Gordon's Reel," from the 
old air, " The German Lairdie." — Reliques. Mr Marshall 
must certainly have been quizzing the gentleman who gave 
Burns this information, for there does not seem to be any 
resemblance whatever between the " German Lairdie," (vide 
Hogg's Jacobite Reliques, vol. i. p. 83.^ and Marshall's 
" Marquis of Huntly's Reel," or his " Farewell." With 
regard to his " Miss Admiral Gordon's Reel," it is evidently 
taken from the old tune called " The Lowlands of Holland," 
(compare the tune, No 1 15, in vol. ii. of the Museum^ with No 
235, in vol. iii. of the same work.) In my opinion, " The 
Marquis of Huntly's Reel" is not only one of the best and 
most original airs, but likewise more free from plagiarisms 
than any other tune Marshall ever composed. The air in the 
Museum is very injudiciously altered and curtailed. A ge- 
nuine set of the tune, with the first verse of Mr Skinners 
song, is therefore annexed. 


Written ly the Rev. Mr Skinner. Air ly William Marshall. 



Tune your fid- dies, tune them sweetly. Play the Marquis' 








reel discreetly; Here we are a band completely Fitted to be 







jol-ly. Come, my boys, be glad and gaucie, Ev'-ry youngster 



l= F==N 

•«-: — i^ 


IS— ••- 

^— — ft^ 

y— r— g: 

choose his lassie. Dance \\^i' life, and be not saucy, Shj^, nor melan- 








cho-ly. Come, my boys, be glad and gaucie, Ev'ry youngster 



hr^ — ;:: ^ — t t — T ^~t ':s-^ l iS — ;^~r 

choose his lassie, Dance wi' life, and be not saucy. Shy, nor melan- 





.—^ — ^ — 




The rest of this excellent song will be found in the third 
volume of the Scottish Musical Museum. 




This beautiful poem, for it can scarcely be called a song, 
beginning " As over Gladsmuir's blood-stain'd field," was 
written by William Hamilton of Bangour, Esq. and set to 
music by Mr William Macgibbon, who published the three 
well known volumes of Scottish tunes. Gladsmuir is the 
name of a parish in the county of Haddington, in the vicinity 
of which the battle between Prince Charles Edward and Sir 
John Cope was fought, in September 1745. The events of 
this engagement are too recent to require any further remarks. 


The ballad of Gill Morice has every appearance of being 
a true narrative of an event that happened in a remote age, 
although the language mav gradually have been modernized 
in descending, by oral communication, from one generation to 
another. In Bishop Percy's Folio Manuscript, which, from 
internal evidence, is at least as old as the reign of Queen 
Elizabeth, there is an old ballad, entitled " Childe Maurice," 
in which the same incidents that occur in Gill Morice are de- 
tailed, though in less polished and ruder language. A very 
accurate copy of this old ballad may be seen in Jamieson's 
Popular Ballads and Songs, vol. i. printed at Edinburgh in 
1806. This gentleman justly observes, that the anonymous 
editors of Gill Morice are not the only persons who have 
studied to adorn and improve this interesting story. In 
" Owen of Carron," it has received, from the chaste, elegant, 
and pathetic, but diffuse pen of Langhorne, every embellish- 
ment which that species of composition seems to admit of. 
Home has made it the ground-work of the tragedy of " Dou- 
glas," one of the most pleasingly-interesting dramatic poems 
which modern times has produced ; and it has moreover been 
made the subject of a dramatic entertainment, with songs, by 
Mr Rannie of Aberdeen, who is well known in the musical 


world as the author of several very elegant and popular ly- 
rical compositions." 

Bishop Percy says, that the popular Scottish ballad of Gill 
Morice was printed at Glasgow, for the second time, in 1755, 
with an advertisement, stating, that its preservation was owing 
to a lady who favoured the printers with a copy, as it was 
carefully collected from the mouths of old women and nurses ; 
and any reader that could render it more correct or complete, 
was desired to oblige the public with such improvements. In 
consequence of this advertisement sixteen additional verses 
(lines he should have said) were produced. These lines were 
for sometime handed about in manuscript, previous to their 
being incoi-porated in the ballad by that learned prelate ; but 
they are evidently modern interpolations. Gray, in one of his 
letters on Childe Maurice, says, " I have got the old Scotch 
ballad on which Douglas was founded ; it is divine, and as 
long as from hence (Cambridge) to Aston. Have you never 
seen it ? Aristotle's best rules are observed in it in a manner 
that shews the author had never read Aristotle. It begins 
in the fifth act of the play (viz. of Home's Tragedy of Dou- 
glas), you may read it two-thirds through without guessing 
what it is about ; and yet, when you come to the end, it is 
impossible not to understand the whole story." 

As Johnson, from want of room in the Museum, left out 
the greater part of this very beautiful and justly celebrated 
ballad, it is here inserted entire, with the sixteen lines, or four 
stanzas, alluded to by Bishop Percy. These modern inter- 
polations, however,' are printed in italics^ to distinguish them 
from the older verses. 


An old Scottish Ballad. 

Gill Mokice was an erle's son. 
His name it waxed wide ; 
It was nae for his great riches^ 
Nor yet his meikle pride. 
But it was for a lady gay 
That liv'd on Carron side. 


" Whar sail I get a bonny boy. 
That will win hose and shoen ; 
That will gae to Lord Barnard's ha'. 
And bid his lady cum ? 

"' And ye maun rin my errand, Willie, 
And ye maun rin wi' speed ; 
Whan ither boys gang on their feet 
Ye saU hae prancing steed." 

" Oh no ! Oh no .' my master dear ! 
I dar nae for my life ; 
I'll no gae to the bauld baron's. 
For to tryst furth his wife." 

" My bird Willie, my boy Willie, 
My dear Willie," he sayd. 
How can ye strive against the stream .'' 
For I sail be obey'd." 

" But 0, my master dear !" he cry'd. 
In grene wode ye're your lain ; 
Gie owre sic thoughts, I wald ye rede. 
For fear ye should be ta'en." 

" Haste, haste, I say, gae to the ha'. 
Bid her cum here wi' speid ; 
If ye refuse my high command, 
I'll gar your body bleid. 

" Gae bid her take this gae mantel, 
'Tis a' gowd but the hem ; 
Bid her cum to the gude green wode, 
Ein by hirsell alane. 

" And there it is, a silken sarke. 
Her ain hand sew'd the slieve ; 
And bid her cum to GUI Morice, 
Speir nae bauld baron's leave." 

" Yes ; I will gae your black errand. 
Though it be to your cost ; 
Sen ye will nae be warn'd by me. 
In it ye sail find frost. 

'' The baron he's a man o' micht. 
He ne'er could bide to taunt. 
And ye will see before it's nicht 
How sma' ye'U hae to vaunt. 

" And sen I maun your errand rin, 
Sae sair against nny will, 
I'se mak a vow and keip it true, 
It sail be done for ill." 


And whan he cam to broken brigg. 
He bent his bow and swam ; 
And when he cam to grass growing, 
Set down his feet and ran. 

And whan he cam to Barnard's yette. 
Would neither chap nor ca' ; 
But set his bent bow to his breistj 
And lichtly lap the wa'. 

He wald nae tell the man his errand. 
Though he stude at the yette ; 
But strait into the ha' he cam, 
Whar they were set at meat. 

" Hail ! hail ! my gentle sire and dame ! 
My message winna wait ; 
Dame, ye maun to the gude grene wode. 
Before that it be late. 

" Ye're bidden tak this gay mantel, 
'Tis a' gowd but the hem ; 
Ye maun gae to the gude grene wode, 
Ein by yoursel alane. 

*' And there it is, a silken sarke. 
Your ain hand sew'd the sleive ; 
Ye maun gae speak to Gill Morice, 
Speir nae bauld baron's leave." 

The lady stamped wi' her foot. 
And winked wi' her e'e ; 
But a' that she cou'd say or do. 
Forbidden he wadna be. 

" It's surely to my bow'r-woman ; 
It neir cou'd be to me." 
'' I brocht it to Lord Barnard's lady, 
I trow that ye be she." 

Then up and spak the wylie nurse, 
(The bairn upon her knee) 
" If ye be cum frae Gill Morice 
It's dear welcum to me." 

" Ye lie, ye lie, ye filthy nurse, 
Sae loud's I hear ye lie ; 
I brocht it to Lord Barnard's lady; 
I trow ye be nae she." 

Then up and spak the bauld baron, j 

An angry man was he, 

He's taen the table wi' Ills foot 

Sae has he wi' his knee ; 

Till crystal cup and ezar dish 

In flinders he gart flee. 

196 cpill.— GILL MOBICE. 

" Gae bring a robe of your eliding. 
That hings upon the pin ; 
And I'll gae to the gude grene wode. 
And speak wi' your leman." 

" bide at hame, now Lord Bernard, 
I rede ye bide at hame ; 
Neir wyte a man for violence. 
That neir wyte ye wi' nane." 

Gill Morice sate in gude green wode. 
He whistled and he sang, 
" what means a' the folk coming ? 
My mother tarries lang." 

His hair was like the threads of gold 
Drawn frae Minerva s home : 
His lips like roses drapping dew. 
His breath was d perfume. 

His brow was like the mountain sna" 
Gilt by the morning beam : 
His cheeks like living roses glow. 
His een like azure stream. 

The hoy was clad in robes of grene. 
Sweet as the infant spring ; 
And like the mavis on the bush, 
He gart the vallies ring. 

The baron to the grene wood came 
Wi' meikle dule and care. 
And there he spied Gill Morice 
Kaiming his yellow hair. 

That sweetly wav'd around his face, 
That face beyond compare ; 
He sang sae sweet, it might dispel 
A' rage but fell despair. 

" Nae wonder, nae wonder, Gill IMorice, 
My lady lo'es you weel, 
The fairest part of my body 
Is blacker than your heel. 

" Yet ne'er the less now. Gill Morice, 
For a' thy great beautie, 
Ye'se rew the day ye eir was born ; 
That head sail gae wi' me." 

Now he has drawn his trusty brand. 
And slait it on the strae. 
And thro' Gill Morice fair body 
He gart cauld iron gae. 


And he has tane Gill Morice head. 
And set it on a speir ; 
The meanest man in a' his train 
Has gotten that head to bear. 

And he has taen Gill Morice up. 
Laid him across his steid. 
And brocht him to his painted bow'r. 
And laid him on a bed. 

The lady, on the castle wa'. 
Beheld baith dale and down ; 
And there she saw Gill Morice's head 
Cum trailing to the toun. 

" Better I loe that bluidy head, 
Botand that yellow hair. 
Than Lord Barnard and a' his lands. 
As they lig here and there." 

And she has taen GUI Morice head. 
And kiss'd baith cheek and chin ; 
'' I was ance as fow of Gill Morice 
As the hip is o' the stane. 

'* I gat ye in my father's house 
Wi' meikle sin and shame ; 
I brocht ye up in the gude grene wode, 
Ken'd to mysel' alane. 

" Aft have I by thy cradle sate. 
And fondly seen thee sleip ; 
But now I maun gae 'bout thy grave, 
A mother's tears to weip." 

And syne she kiss'd his bluidy cheik. 
And syne his bluidy chin ; 
" O better I loed my son Morice 
Than a' my kyth and kin." 

" Awa, awa, ye Ul woman. 
An ill death may ye die ; 
Gin I had ken'd he was your son. 
He had ne'er been slain by me." 

" Upbraid me not, my Lord Bernard ! 
Upbraid me not for shame ! 
Wi' that same speir, O pierce my heart ! 
And put me out o' pain. 

" Since nothing but Gill Morice head 
That jealous rage could quell. 
Let that saine hand now take her life; 
That ne'er to thee did ill. 


" To me nae after days nor nichts. 
Will e'er be saft or kind ; 
I'll fill the air wi' heavy sighs^ 
And greet till I be blind." 

" With waefu' wae, I hear your plaint ; 
Sair, sair, I rue the deid^ 
That eir this cursed hand of mine 
Had gar'd his body bleid. 

" Dry up your tears, my winsome dame^ 
They neir can heal the wound ; 
You see his head upon the speir. 
His heart's bluid on the ground. 

" I curse the hand that did the deid, 
The heart that thocht the ill. 
The feet that bore me wi' sic speid 
The comely youth to kill. 

" rU ay lament for Gill Morice, 
As gin he were my ain ; 
I'll neir forget the driery day 
On which the youth was slain." 

In singing, or rather chanting, this old ballad, the two last 
lines of every stanza are repeated. In 1786, I heard a lady, 
then in her 90th year, sing the ballad in this manner. 

From the Reliques of Burns, it would appear, that his 
friend Captain Robert Riddel was of opinion, that the whole 
of the foregoing ballad was a modei'n composition, perhaps 
not prior to the year 1650, but he believed it might have 
been taken from an old ballad, called " Child Maurice,'" 
which he says is now lost, and that the beautiful plaintive 
air to which it is sung was composed by Mr M'Gibbon, 
the selector of a Collection of Scots Tunes. Captain Riddel 
"was greatly mistaken in asserting, that " Child Maurice was 
lost, as it is printed in Jamieson''s Old Scottish Songs and 
Ballads several years ago. The faulty measure of some of 
the stanzas of the ballad " Gill Morice," evinces, that it 
must have been greatly corrupted from the ignorance of the 
oral reciters. Those stanzas printed in italics, are obviously 
spurious modern interpolations. They are also very silly, 
and altogether unnecessary, as the story is complete without 
them. The air, it is believed, was composed some centuries 


before Mr M^Gibbon had existence, who died so late as Sd 
October 1756. The late Mr William Tytler, Esq. of 
Woodhouselee, who knew M 'Gibbon well, assured me, that 
Gill Morice was one of the oldest of our melodies ; and indeed 
the wild, and peculiar structure of the air, carries internal 
evidence of its antiquity. This tune, which consists of one 
simple strain, is not to be found in any of M' Gibbon's pub- 
lications ; but it appears in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, and in a Collection of Old Tunes published by Brem- 



This ancient air is inserted in Mrs Crockat's MSS., written 
in 1709. It also appears in the Collections of M'Gibbon 
and Oswald. There are two songs to it in the Museum, the 
first, beginning " My Sandie gied to me a ring," was slight- 
ly altered by Burns, because it was rather inadmissible in its 
original state. 

The other, beginning " The smiling plains profusely gay," 
was written by Mr William Falconer, the justly celebrated 
author of " The Shipwreck,"" and other poems. 

Falconer was born about the year 1730, in Edinburgh, 
where his father carried on the humble occupation of a hair- 
dresser. At an early period, he went on board a Leith 
merchantman, in which he served his apprenticeship. But 
as true genius will rise superior to every obstacle, our 
author, by private study and incessant application, reme- 
died the defects of a very limited education, and display- 
ed his poetical powers in a work published at Edinburgh 
in 1751, entitled, " A Poem, sacred to the Memory of 
Frederic, Prince of Wales."" This poem, though credit- 
able to th6 genius of its youthful author, did not add much 
to the weight of his purse. He therefore again went to sea as a 
mariner, in a merchant ship named the Britannia, and continu- 
ed in that situation till the unfortunate loss of this vessel, in a 
violent storm off the Cape of Colonne, on the coast of Greece, 
when every soul on board perished except our author and 


two of the crew. On his return to Britain, he composed a 
work which afforded an ample display of nautical ability, 
combined with poetical merit. It was published in 1762, 
under the title of " The Shipwreck, a poem in three cantos, 
by a Sailor," and was inscribed to his Royal Highness Ed- 
ward, Duke of York. 

The favourable reception which this poem so justly ob- 
tained from the public, soon raised its author from the ob- 
scurity of his former situation, and being patronized by the 
Duke of York, to whom he addressed an " Ode on his Se- 
cond Departure from England as Rear Admiral," he was ap- 
pointed purser to the Royal George, one of the finest ships 
in the British Navy. 

In 1764, he published a new edition of " The Ship- 
wreck," greatly improved and enlarged, and in 1769 ap- 
peared his " Marine Dictionary," a work extremely ingeni- 
ous and useful. In the course of the same year, he was ap- 
pointed purser of the Aurora frigate, bound for India, which 
arrived in safety at the Cape of Good Hope. In December 
1769, she left the Cape for her ulterior destination, but was 
never afterwards seen or heard of. * It is generally supposed, 
that she took fire at sea, blew up, and all on board perished. 
None of Falconer's family are now knoAvn to exist in Edin- 
burgh. A sister, who was considered as the last surviving 
member, died some years ago in the charity work-house of 
that city. It is to be hoped, that the inhabitants of the 
Scottish metropolis will yet erect a monument to the memory 
of their fellow-citizen. Falconer, whose excellence as a poet, 
and worth as a man, justly merit such a tribute. 

The words of this fine song were written by Mr John 
Lapraik, late of Dalfram, near Muirkirk, in the county of 
Ayr. Mr Lapraik was under the necessity of selling his 
estate of Dalfram, in consequence of becoming security for 
some persons who were connected with the ruinous concern 
of the Ayr Bank. 


*' He has often told me (says Burns), that he composed 
this song one day when his wife had been fretting over their 

This is the identical song which Burns alludes to in his 
poetical epistle to J. Lapraik. 

There was ae sang amang the rest, 
Aboon them a' it pleas'd me best. 
That some kind husband had addrest 

To some sweet wife; 
It thrill'd the heart-strings thro' the breast, ' 

A' to the life. 

Burns communicated the song to Johnson, and Mr Clarke 
adapted it to the air called " The Scots Recluse," one of the 
earliest compositions of Mr James Oswald, who published it 
in the first volume of his Pocket Companion, page 13th. 



This song, beginning " 'Twas at the hour of dark mid- 
night," is another production of Sir Gilbert Elliot of Minto, 
Bart, ancestor of the present Earl of Minto. It was com- 
posed as a tribute of respect to the memory of the gallant 
Colonel James Gardiner, who fell at the battle of Preston- 
pans, in September 1745. 

Colonel Gardiner was highly esteemed even by those who 
differed widely from him in their political creed. Skirvin, after 
lampooning some ofthe royal officers for their cowardice, says. 

But Gard'ner brave did still behave 

Like to a hero bright, man ; 

His courage true, like him were few 

That still despised flight, man : 

For king and laws, and country's cause, 

In honour's bed he lay, man ; 

His life, but not his courage, fled. 

While he had breath to draw, man. 

For a particular account of this brave soldier and pious 
christian, see his Life, by the Reverend Philip Doddridge. 
Mrs Richmond Inglis, one of the Colonel's daughters, wrote 
a pretty poetical tale, called " Anna and Edgar," printed at 
Edinburgh, in 1781, and dedicated to the Queen. It was 
very favourably received. 


Sir Gilbert's song is adapted to the tune of " Sawny's 
Pipes," published in Oswald's Pocket Companion and other 
old collections. 


This little song was written by Burns, in 1789, purposely 
for the Museum. The words are adapted to a Scottish jig, 
called Johnny 31'Gill, from the name of its composer the 
late Mr John M'Gill, musician in Girvan, Ayrshire. Mr 
Hector M'Neil, author of " Will and Jean," a Poem, has also 
composed a fine ballad to the same air, beginning " Come 
under my plaidie," which the reader will find inserted in the 
sixth volume of the Museum, page 550. 

This song, beginning " When west winds did blow with 
a soft gentle breeze," is another production of Mr John Lap- 
raik already noticed, and was likewise commvmicated by 
Burns to Johnson. — See notes on Song-, No 205. The 
words are adapted to the tune called " Scots Jenny,"" com- 
posed by Oswald, and published in the fifth volume of his 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, page 7th. 



Tune, " Highlander's Lament, 

Burns says, " the oldest title I ever heard to this tune, 
was ' The Highland Watch's Farewell to Ireland ;'' the 
chorus I picked up from an old woman in Dunblane ; the 
rest of the song is mine." — Reliques. 



This excellent loyal Scottish song, beginning " In the 
garb of old Gaul," is the composition of the late Sir Harry 
Erskine of Torry, Bart. The air was composed by the late 
General John Reid, Colonel of the S8th i-egiment of foot, 
who has bequeathed a considerable sum for establishing a 
Professorship of Music in the University of Edinburgh. 


The tune made its first appearance in a small Collection of 
Marches, Minuets, &c. composed by J. R. Esq. and dedi- 
cated to the Right Honourable Lady Catharine Murray. It 
is there titled " The Highland, or 42d Regiment's March." 
The song is printed in Herd's Collection, 1769 and 1776. 


• This song, beginning " The morn was fair, saft was the 
air," set to the fine old air of " Leader Haughs and Yar- 
row," is taken from Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany. It is 
there published, anonymously, under the title of Sweet Susan, 
to the tune of " Leader Haughs ;" but I have always heard it 
attributed to Crawfurd, author of the song of Tweedside. 

Both the old ballad of " Leader Haughs and Yarrow," 
and the tune, are said to be the composition of Nicol Burn, a 
Border minstrel, who flourished about the middle of the 
sixteenth century. As Thomson, in his Orpheus Caledo- 
nius, gave a preference to the original verses, they are also 

here inserted. 

When Phoebus bright the azure skies 
With golden rays enlight'neth^ 
He makes all nature's beauties rise. 
Herbs, trees, and flow'rs he quick'iieth : 
Amongst all those he makes his choice. 
And with delight goes thorow. 
With radiant beams the silver streams 
O'er Leader Haughs and Yarroiu. 

When Aries the day and night 
In equal length divideth, 
Auld frosty Saturn takes his flight, 
Nae langer he abideth ; 
Then Flora, queen, with mantle green. 
Casts off her former sorrow. 
And vows to dwell with Ceres' sel'. 
On Leader Haughs and Yarrow. 

Pan playing on his aiten reed. 
And shepherds him attending^ 
Do here resort their flocks to feed. 
The hills and hautrhs commending. 


With cur and kent upon the bent. 

Sing to the sun good-morrow. 

And swear nae fields mair pleasure yields 

Than Leader Haughs and Yarrow. 'l 

IV. ^ 

An house there stands on Leader-side, ;^ 

Surmounting my descriving, ^i 

With rooms sae rair, and windows fair, '?. 

Like Dedalus contriving ; 

Men passing by do often cry. 

In sooth it hath nae marrow. 

It stands as sweet on Leader-side 

As Newark does on Yarrow. 

A mile below, wha lists to ride. 
They'll hear the mavis singing. 
Into Saint Leonard's banks she'll bide. 
Sweet birks her head o'erhingmg ; 
The lintwliite loud, and progne proud. 
With tuneful throats and narrow. 
Into Saint Leonard's banks they sing 
As sweetly as on Yarrow. 


The lapwing lUteth o'er the lee. 

With nimble wing she sporteth. 

But vows she'll flee frae tree to tree 

Where Philomel resorteth : 

By break of day the lark can say, 

I'll bid you a good morrow, 

I'll streek my wing, and, mounting, sing 

O'er Leader Haughs and Yari-ow. 


Park, Wanton-waws, and Wooden-cleugh, 
The east and western Mainses, 
The wood of Lauder's fan* enough. 
The corns are good in Blainshes; 
Where aits are fine and sold by kind. 
That if ye search all thorow, 
Meams, Buchan, Mar, nae better are 
Than Leader Haughs and Yarrow. 

In Burmill Bog and Whiteslade Shaws, 
The fearful hare she haunteth ; 
Brighaugh and Braidwoodshiel she knaws. 
And Chapel-wood frequenteth ; 



Yet when she irks to Kaidslie birks. 
She rins and sighs for sorrow, 
^ That she should leave sweet Leader Haughs, 
And cannot win to Yarrow. 


What sweeter music wad ye hear. 

Than hounds and beagles crying ? 

The started hare rins hard with fear. 

Upon her speed relying. 

But yet her strength it fails at length, 

Nae beilding can she borrow 

In Sorrel's field, Cleckman or Hags, 

And sighs to be on Yarrow, 


For Rockwood, Ringioood, Spotty, Shag, 

With sight and scent pursue her. 

Till, ah ! her pith begins to flag, 

Nae cunning can rescue her : 

O'er dub and dyke, o'er seugh and syke. 

She'll rin the fields all thorow. 

Till fail'd, she fa's on Leader Haughs, 

And bids farewell to Yarrow. 


Sing Erslington and Cowdenknows, 
Where Homes had ance commanding, 
Audi Dry grange, with the milk-white ewes, 
'Twixt Tweed and Leader standing. 
The bird that flees throw Reedpath trees 
And Gledswood banks ilk morrow. 
May chant and sing, sweet Leader Haughs 
And bomiy Howms of Yarrow. 


But minstrel Burn cannot assuage 
His grief, while life endureth. 
To see the changes of this age 
That fleeting time procureth ; 
For many a place stands in hard case. 
Where blyth fowk kend nae sorrow. 
With Homes, that dwelt on Leader-side, 
And Scotts, that dwelt on Yarrow. 


This ancient and beautiful air is the March of the Corpora- 
tion of Tailors. It is generally played at the annual meetings 
for choosing the deacons, and other office-bearers of the so- 



ciety. The popular air of " Logie o' Buchan," is only a 
slight variation of the " Tailor's old March." The second 
and fourth verses of the song were written by Burns, the rest 
of it is very old. 


The first stanza of this song, beginning " Simmer's a 
pleasant time," was written by Burns, and he even made 
some slight alterations on the very old fragment incorporated 
with his words. As the tune in the Museum is far from be- 
ing genuine, the ancient air is here inserted, with all that is 
known to exist of the original verses. 





When I sleep I dream, When I wake I'm i-rie. Rest I can-na 





*^ -J- 

/ get. For thinkin o' my dearie. Ay wakin, oh ! Wakin aye and 



^ — ~ 




i - rie ; Sleep I canna get. For thinkin o' my dearie 

Lanely night comes on, 
A' the lave are sleepin' ; 
I think o' my lad. 
And bleer my een wi' greetin. 

Ay ivakin, oh! 

Wakin ay and irie ; 

Sleep 1 canna get 

For thinkin o my dearie 


It cam in my head. 
To send my luve a letter ; 
My lad canna read. 
And I loe him the better. 

Ay tvakin, oh ! 

Wakin ay, and irie ; 

Sleep I canna get 

For thinkin o' my dearie. 

In Mr George Thomson's Collection of Scottish Songs, the 
air of " Ay wakin, oh I" is enlarged so as to finish on the 
key-note, and the time is changed from treple to common. 
The tune, however, is far better in its native wildness and 
simplicity : both Tytler and Ritson were of opinion, that this 
air, from its intrinsic evidence, was one of our oldest melodies, 
and I see no reason to differ from them. 

Burns was extremely fond of this tune. Besides the stanza 

already mentioned, he composed the following affecting verses 

to the same air, in May 1795. 

Can I cease to care ? 
Can I cease to languish. 
While my darling fair 
Is on the couch of anguish. 

Long, long the night, 

Heavy comes the morrow ; 

While my soul's delight 

Is on her led of sorrow. 

Every hope is fled. 
Every fear is terror ! 
Slumber, too, I dread. 
Every dream is horror ! 
Long, long, &c. 

Hear me, powers divine ! 
Oh ! in pity hear me ! 
Take aught else of mine. 
But my Chloris spare me ! 

Long, long the night, 
, Heavy comes the marroiu ; 

While m,y soul's delight 

Is on her bed of sorrow. 

The publisher of the Museum received this very humo- 
rous ballad, beginning " There was a bridal in this town," 



alongst with the sprightly air to which it is set, from an ano- 
nymous correspondent. The verses are written in the broad 
Buchan dialect ; but their author is unknown to the Editor. 
The breast-knot was a fashionable piece of female dress up- 
wards of a century ago, and continued to be worn to a late pe- 
riod, as appears from several of Sir Joshua Reynolds' pictures, 


This air is the composition of Mr Allan Masterton, author 
of the tune called " Strathallan's Lament," — See Notes on 
Song 132, vol. ii. The verses, beginning " Ye gallants 
bright, I rede you right," were written, in 1788, by Burns, in 
compliment to Miss Ann Masterton, daughter of the com- 

This song was written by Ramsay, prior to the year 1724 ; 
but he borrowed a line or two from the following old nursery 

O THIS is no my ain house. 
My ain house, my ain house ; 

this is no my ain house, 

1 ken by the biggin o't ; 

For bread and cheese are my door cheeks. 
Are my door cheeks, are my door cheeks ; 
For bread and cheese are my door cheeks. 
And pancakes the riggin o't. 

O this is no my ain wean. 
My ain wean, my ain wean ; 

this is no my ain wean, 

1 ken by the greetie o't. 

I'll tak the curchie afF my head, 
AfF my head, afF my head ; 
I'll tak the curchie aff my head. 
And row't about the feetie o't. 

In the Museum, Ramsay's verses are not set to the origi- 
nal tune of " This is no my ain House," but to a very old air, 
called Diel stick the Minister, from an old, but rather licen- 
tious song, beginning 

If ye kiss my wife, 

I'll tell the minister, &c. &c. 


This tune is inserted in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, book vii. printed about the year 1743. 

The following song was written by Burns in July 1795 
to the same tune. 


O this is no my ain lassie, 
Fair though the lassie be ; 
O weel ken I my ain lassie. 
Kind love is in her e'e. 

I SEE a form^ I see a face^ 
Ye weel may wi' the fairest place : — 
It wants to me the witching grace. 
The kind love that's in her e'e. 

O this is no, &c. 

She's bonny blooming, straight and tall. 
And lang has had my heart in thrall ; 
And ay it charms my very saul. 
The kind love that's in her e'e. 

O this is no, &c. 

A thief sae pawkie is my Jean, 
To steel a blink by a' unseen ; 
But gleg as light are lovers' een, 
When kind love in the e'e. 

O this is no, &c. 

It may escape the courtly sparks. 
It may escape the learned clarks ; 
But weel the watching lover marks 
The kind love that's in her e'e. 

O this is no, &c. 

There is a set of the tune of " Deil stick the Minister,"" in- 
serted in Eraser's Gaelic airs, under the title of " Sean Truid's 
Uillachan," printed in 1816, and the editor, in a note, informs 
us, that the tune " is the modelling of Mr Campbell of Bud- 
yet, and other Nairnshire gentlemen, formerly mentioned. 
The air is of considerable antiquity, but it was formed by 
them into this standard.'''' Of course we must beheve it to 
be of Gaelic extraction ; but the Gaelic title will not do : It 
is evidently a barbarous translation of Willie's Shantrews. 
The word Shan, is a common Scottish adjective, signifying 
poor or shabby, and shantrews, in the same dialect, literally 
means shabby or poor-looking trowsers, a name by which 




the tune has been known in common, with its still more ob- 
jectionable title, at all our dancing-schools for many genera- 

" Of Umquihile John to lie or bann, 
Shaws but ill will and looks right shan. 

Ye're never rugget shan nor kittle. 
But blythe and gabby. 

Ramsay's Poems. 

As the reader may perhaps wish to see the original air of 
" This is no my ain House," it is inserted from Mrs Crockat's 
book, written in 1709, with the first verse of the song after- 
wards written by Ramsay. 








Tr« /-» 








■yf-* ^ 



'• - 










-S^ I 



-% — 

:: 1 




O THIS is no my ain house, I ken by the rigging o't; Since 


with my love I've changed vows, I dinna like the bigging o't 
s — ^-T-— h f T-- ^■ 

a —9- 



For now that I'm young Robie's bride. And mistress too of 

his fire -side. Mine ain house I'll like to guide. And 
-* -z h r-T— ^- 



please me with the trigging o't. 


This sprightly old air is preserved in Oswald's Caledonian 
Pocket Companion, and several other publications. It is 
freqviently used as a dancing tune. There is only one verse 
of the song in Herd's Collection. The old verses are here 
subjoined. . 

.h ■-:■ 

ccxvir. — MY wipe's a wanton wee thing. 211 

My wife's a wanton wee thing. 
My wife's a wanton wee thing. 
My wife's a wanton wee thing-. 
She winna be guided by me ; 
She play'd the loon ere she was many'd. 
She play'd the loon ere she was marry 'd. 
She play'd the loon ere she was niarry'd, 
, She'll do't again ere she die. 

She sell'd her gown and she drank it. 
She sell'd her gow^i and she drank it. 
She row'd hersell in a blanket. 
She winna be guided by me ; 
She did it altho' I forbad her. 
She did it altho' I forbad her; 
I took a rung and I claw'd her. 
And a braw gude bairn was she. 

Burns composed a song of two stanzas to the same air ; but 
Mr George Thomson did not approve of the second, and al- 
tered it considerably, which Bums had the candour to admit 
was a positive improvement. 

Stanza I. hij Burns. 
My wife's a winsome wee thing. 
She is a handsome wee thing. 
She is a bonnie wee thing. 
This sweet Avee wife o' mine. 
I never saw a fairer, 
I neA'er lo'ed a dearer. 
And niest my heart I'll wear her. 
For fear my jewel tine. 

Stanza II. as amended by G. Thomson. 
O leeze me on my wee thing. 
My bonnie blythesome wee thing; 
Sae lang's I hae my wee thing, 
I'll think my lot divine. 
Tho' warld's care we share o't. 
And may see meikle mair o't ; 
Wi' her I'll blythly bear it, ' 
And ne'er a word repine. 


The first song in the Museum, set to the fine old air of 
" Laddie lie near me,'' was written by Dr Blacklock. It 
begins " Hark the loud tempest shakes earth to its centre." 
After the Doctor's sono- follow the old words, with one ver- 


bal alteration, as Johnson thought it more decorous that the 
husband should be the prolocutor. 

In September 1793, Mr Thomson transmitted to Burns a 
long list of such tunes as he conceived to be deserving of 
new verses, amongst which Avas the air of " Laddie lie near 
me." The Bard, in answer, wrote him that " Laddie lie near 
me must lie hy me for some time. I do not know the air ; 
and until I am complete master of a tune, in my own singing 
(such as it is), I never can compose for it. My way is : I 
consider the poetic sentiment correspondent to my idea of 
the musical expression ; then choose my theme ; begin one 
stanza : when that is composed, which is generally the most 
difficult part of the business, I walk out, sit down now and 
then, look out for objects in nature around me, that are in 
unison and harmony with the cogitations of my fancy and 
workings of my bosom, humming every now and then the 
air with the verses I have framed. When I feel my muse 
beginning to jade, I retire to the solitary fire-side of my 
study, and there commit my effusions to paper, swinging 
at intervals on the hind-legs of my elbow-chair, by way of 
calling forth my own critical strictures as my pen goes on. 
Seriously this, at home, is almost invariably my way." 

It was accordingly nearly two years after this period that 
Burns wrote the following 

To the Tune of " Laddie lie near me" 
'TwAS na her bonnie blue e'e was my ruin ; 
Fair tho' she be, that was ne'er my vindoing, 
'Twas the dear smile, when naebody did mind us, 
'Twas the bewitching, sweet, stown glance of kindness. 

Sair do I fear that to hope is denied me ; 
Sair do I fear that despair maun abide me ; 
But tho' fell fortune should fate us to sever. 
Queen shall she be in my bosom forever. 

Mary, I'm thine wi' a passion sincerest. 
And thou has plighted me love the dearest ! 
And thou'rt an angel that never can alter. 
Sooner the sun in his motion should falter. 



This very humorous song, beginning " There came a young 
man to my daddie's door," previously appeared in Herd's 
Collection, in 1776. The author is yet anonymous. In 
Gow's Complete Repository, vol. i. the tune is strangely de- 
nominated, " Bung your Eye." 

This fine song, beginning *' When rosy May comes in 
wi' Flowers," was written by Burns purposely for the Mu- 
seum. The old tune to which it is adapted is " The Gar- 
dener's March," some bars of which have a considerable 
affinity to the tune called " The March of Charles the 12th, 
King of Sweden." 



This ballad is ancient. Bishop Percy had an old printed 
copy in his possession, which was entitled " Barbara Allan's 
Cruelty, or the Young Man's Tragedy," reprinted in the 
third volume of his Ancient Songs and Ballads, at London, 
in 176T. It is evidently an embellished edition of the old 
Scottish ballad in the Museum, which is taken "verbatim from 
that preserved in Ramsay's Miscellany in 1724. The learn- 
ed prelate's copy makes the heroine's residence at Scarlet 
Town^ (the city of Carlisle, perhaps;) and calls the hero 
Jemmye Grove. In other respects, the story is nearly the 
same in both ballads, and may possibly have had its origin from 
circumstances that really occurred. Be that as it may, it has 
been a favourite ballad, at every country fire- side in Scotland, 
time out of memory. The strains of the ancient minstrel who 
composed this song, may, indeed, appear harsh and unpo- 
lished when compared with modern refinements ; neverthe- 
less he has depicted the incidents of his story with such a 
bold, glowing, and masterly pencil, as would do credit to any 
age. A learned correspondent informs me, that he remem- 
"bers having heard the ballad frequently sung in Dumfries- 


shire, where it was said the catastrophe took place — that 
there were people of the name of Allan, who resided in the 
town of Annan — and that, in some papers which he has seen, 
mention is made of a Barbara of that family — but he is of 
opinion she may have been baptized from the ballad. 

This old song was printed in Ramsay's Tea-Table Mis- 
cellany, 1724, where it is called " Cecilia's Reflections on 
herself for slighting Phflander's love," to the tune of the 
" Gallant Shoemalcer-" It is followed by another song in 
the same work, by way of answer, entitled " The Young 
Ladies' Thanks to the repentant Virgin for her seasonable Ad- 
vice." The first and third stanzas of " Young Philander," 
Anglocized by Thomas Durfey, and adapted to a tune com- 
posed by Daniel Purcell, brother of Henry Purcell the 
celebrated composer, were introduced in Durfey ''s Opera, en- 
titled. The famous History of the Rise and Fall of Massa- 
niello, acted at London 1 699. In Thomson's Orpheus Ca- 
ledonius this ballad is adapted to a fine old air, called the 
" Pier of Leith." In the Museum, it is set to a modernized 
copy of the same turie, but the additions and alterations have 
nearly destroyed the simplicity of the original, and rendered 
it too long and tiresome. In Ramsay's days the ballad was 
sung to the " Gallant Shoemaker," an old Scottish air, 
which Charles Coffey selected from one of his songs, begin- 
ing " If you would trvie courage show," in his opera called 
The Female Parson, or Beau in the Suds, acted at Hay-mar- 
ket Theatre, in London, in 1730. 


Young Phi-lan-der woo'd me lang., But I Mas peevish, 

. ■ K k. b 

ai)(l f(jr-bad liiui ; I m ad-ua tent liis ]u\--ii)g' saug,, But 









now I wishj I wish I had him 
fczs — y 

Ilk moi-niiig when I 


view my glass. Then I perceive my beauty's go - ing- : 

^b^ — ^-^ — ^ -f * "^ F f-t-t-f- ■ 

&.^r:^--i— ^-^--^— i =^ -— ~ -J^-i — « -J-7 - 

When the wrinkles seize the face. Then Ave may bid a- 

±1 -^ 

/TnM-'^ (f-Cf fti/i^i 

dieu to wooing. 


This charming song was composed by Burns, in 1789, 
for the Museum, at the request of Mr Johnson, in place of 
a very indeUcate one inserted in Ramsay's Tea-Table Mis- 
cellany, volume third, with the same title, and to the same 


This song was likewise composed by Burns, as a tribute 
of gratitude and respect to one of the happiest and worthiest 
married couples in the world, Robert Riddell, Esq. of Glen- 
riddill, and liis lady. " At their fire-side (says Burns) I 
have enjoyed more pleasant evenings than at all the houses of 
fashionable people in this country put together — and to their 
kindness and hospitality I am indebted for many of the hap- 
piest hours of my life." Reliques. 

The tune was composed by Mr Riddell himself, and 
named the seventh of November, which was the anniversary 
of his mariiage. Mr Cromek, editor of the Reliques of 
Burns, says, that when he visited Friar's Carse Hermitage, 
(on the late Mr Riddell's estate,) so much celebrated by 
Burns, he was greatly shocked to find this little spot, that 
ought to have been held sacred, almost gone to decay. The 
pane of glass, on which the poet had written his well-known 
" Lines," was removed ; the floor was covered with straw ; 


the door thrown open ; and the trees, that had been planted 
at the entrance to this interesting place, were broken down 
and destroyed by cattle. 

Such was the late proprietor. Captain Smith's neglect of 
a spot, on the window of which Robert Burns had traced, 
with his own hand, this tender tribute to the memory of a 
departed friend. 

" To Riddell, much lamented man ! 
This ivied cot was dear ; 
Wanderer, dost value matchless worth? 
This ivied cot revere !" 

How different the reverence of a poor old female cottager, 
living in a wretched hut in the immediate neighbourhood of 
Ellisland. On being asked if she knew Burns : — " Kend 
him ! Aye did I ! He was a great man for poems and mak- 
ing of heuksy and the like o' that; but he's deed now, puir manr 



The title and the last half stanza of the song are old; therest 
was composed by Burns. The cheerful air to which the verses 
are adapted was also used as a dancing tune, under the name 
of " Lady Badinscoth's Reel," as appears from an old MS. 
copy of the tune, inserted in page 8, vol ii. of an original 
edition of Macgibbon's Scots Tunes, now belonging to Mr 
David Laing of Edinburgh, bookseller. 



This ballad, which for sterling humour cannot be surpass- 
ed, is attributed to James V., King of Scotland, about the 
year 1 524. It is related, that this monarch, when a young 
man, u.sed to stroll occasionally about the country, dis- 
guised as an itinerant mechanic or tinker, and to mingle 
with the meanest of his subjects. These frolicsome excur- 
sions often gave birth to curious adventures, which the witty 
monarch made the themes of his songs and ballads, most of 
which, it is believed, are now lost. He was second to none 
of his age both as a poet and a musician. 


The tune to which the verses are set in the Museum, 
though ancient, is but ill adapted to the subject of the bal- 
lad. I have often heard it sung ; but the singers uniformly 
used the same air that goes by the name of " Muirland 
Willie," which is at least as ancient as the ballad, and was, 
in all probability, the very tune to which it was originally, 
and still continues to be sung. 

In 1782, the late Mr Callander of Craigforth published 
the ballad, with literary notes, and luminous observations. 
This work has now become pretty scarce. 


This fine old tune is claimed by the Irish and Scottish 
Highlanders, who call it " Tha mi mo chadal," or " I am 
asleep." Ramsay, about the year 1723, wrote a song be- 
ginning " When innocent pastime our pleasure did crown," 
which he directs to be sung to this air. The song to which 
it is set in the Museum, beginning " 'Twas past twelve 
o'clock, on a cauld frosty morning," is marked with the let- 
ter Z,, as being an old song with additions or corrections — 
but the air deserves much better words. The tune appears 
in Oswald's Collection, book iv. under the title of the 
" Cold Frosty Morning." 

This beautiful song, beginning " Hark ! yonder eagle 
lonely wails," was written and composed by the learned Dr 
David Fordyce, whose merits as a philosophical writer are 
well known. Dr Fordyce perished by shipwreck in 1755. 
See an account of his life prefixed to his Theodorus. There 
is a set of the tune in the fifth book of Oswald, published in 
1742, but it is not so genuine as that in the Museum. 


This tune was composed by Oswald, and published with 


his name as the author, m the second volume of his Caledo- 
nian Pocket Companion, prior to the year 1742. 

The verses in the Museum were written by Burns for 
that work, in the year 1789. I have never met with older 



To its ain Time. 

Ramsay, by the usual signature in his Tea-Table Mis- 
cellany, the letter Z., testifies that this ballad, beginning 
The meal was dear short syne, in his time was known to 
be very ancient. Thomson, his contemporary, published it 
with the original music in 1725. 

A rich vein of genuine broad humour runs through the 
whole of the old song, and the air, although in a minor key, 
is remarkable both for its antiquity and sprightliness. The 
note D, in the middle of the second strain, answering to the 
word syne, ought to be an octave above ; for, although the 
leap from the former note to its twelfth may do very well in 
instrumental music, it is very unsuitable for the voice. 

This fine old air, called " The Silver.Tassie," was recover- 
ed and communicated by Burns, who wrote the whole of this 
song, beginning " Go fetch to me a pint o'' wine," with the 
exception of the first four lines, which belonged to the origi- 
nal verses. This song which, in the Reliques, our bard ac- 
knowledges to be almost wholly his own composition, was 
first introduced by him in a letter to Mrs Dunlop, (dated 
17th Dec. 1788, and printed in Dr Curries edition of his 
works, vol. iii.) as two old stanzas. 


The air and title of this song are taken from Oswald's 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, volume xii. The words 


were written by Burns in 1T89, on purpose for the Museum. 
In his Reliques, the bard simply says, " This song is mine." 


This curious old air may be seen in Oswald's Caledonian 
Pocket Companion, and other collections, under the title of 
" Mount you r Baggage." In the Caledonian Country-dance 
Book, published about a century ago, by John Walsh of 
London, it is called "The Cadie laddie." The verses in 
the Museum, beginning " O mount and go," were commu- 
nicated by Burns ; and although he does not acknowledge 
them, I have good reason to believe they were his own. — 
The old ditty begins, 

I will away^ " 
And I will not tarry, 
I will away 

And be a captain's lady. 
A captain's lady 
Is a dame of honour — 
She has her maids 
Ay to wait upon her — 
To wait upon her. 
And get all things ready, 
I will away 

And be a captain's lady. 
, &c. &c. &c. 

In the third volume of Gow's Complete Repository, the 

reader will find the subject of this curious old melody, with 

a slight variation, transformed into a strathspey, called 

" Dalry-liouse." 



This old air, which originally consisted of one strain, was 
formerly adapted to some silly verses of a song, entitled 
" Fye to the Hills in the Morning." The chorus, or burden 
of the song, was the first strain repeated an octave higher. 
An indifferent set of the tune, under the title of " Johny 
Cope," appears in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, 
volume ix. The verses in the Museum were taken Irom 


a sheet song, printed for A. Magowan, music-seller in Glas- 
gow, interspersed with alterations and additions by Burns. 
A different set of verses, to the same air, may also be seen 
in Ritson's Scottish Songs, volume ii. But these two 
sets are merely variations of the original satirical song, which 
was written by Mr Skirven, author of the song, called " Tra- 
nent Muir," inserted in the second volume of the Museum, 
page 103. See the notes on that song. Both of Mr Skir- 
ven's songs allude to the same event ; namely, the shameful 
defeat of General Sir John Cope, at the battle of Preston, 
on the 22d of September 1745, by Prince Charles Edward 
and the Highland clans who followed his standard. This 
information I obtained from one of Mr Skirven's relations, 
and from several gentlemen who were intimately acquainted 
with him. 


Cope sent a challenge frae Dunbar, 
Charlie meet me an ye daur. 
And ril learn you the airt o' war. 
If you'll meet wi' me in the morning. 

Chorus. — Hey! Jolmie Cape, are ye waking yet? 
Or are. your druins a-heating yet ? 
If ye tvere waking I would wait, 
To gang to the coals i' the morning. 

When Charlie looked the letter upon. 
He drew his sword the scabbard from. 
Come follow me, my merry men. 
And we'll meet Johnie Cope i' the morning. 
Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 

Now, Johnie, be as good as your word. 
Come let us try baith fire and sword. 
And dinna flee like a frighted bird 
That's chas'd frae it's nest i' the morning. 
Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 

When Johnie Cope he heard of this^ 
He thought it wadna be amiss 
To hae a horse in readiness. 
To flee awa i' the morning. 

Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 


Fye now, Johnie, get up and rin, 
The Highland bagpipes mak a din; 
It's best to sleep in a hale skui. 
For 'twill be a bluddie morning. 
Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 

When Johnie Cope to Dunbar came. 
They spear'd at him, where's a' your men ? 
The dell confound me gin I ken. 
For I left them a' i' the morning. 
Hey ! Johnie Cope, Sec. 

Now, Johnie, troth, ye were na blate. 
To come wi' the news o' your ain defeat. 
And leave your men in sic a strait. 
So early in the morning. 

Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 

In faith, quo' Johnie, I got sic flegs 
Wi' their claymores and filabegs. 
If I face them deil break my legs. 
So I wish you a' good morning. 
Hey ! Johnie Cope, &c. 


This air was partly composed by Mr William Marshal], 
butler to the Duke of Gordon, by adding a second strain to 
the old air, called " The Lowlands of Holland has twin'd 
my Love and me," and was by him named " Miss Admiral 
Gordon''s Strathspey." This song, beginning Of a' the airts 
the wind can hlaw, " I composed," says Burns, " out of compli- 
ment to Mrs Burns. N. B. — It was during the honey- 
moon." Reliques. 



The fragment of this old song, beginning " O, dear min- 
ny, what shall I do," was transmitted in a letter from Burns 
to the publisher, wherein the bard says, " Dear Sir, the fore- 
going is all that remains of the old words. It will suit the 
tune very well. — R. Burns," 

The other verses to the same tune, beginning " O, dear 
Peggy, love's beguiling," were written by Ramsay as a song 


for Jenny in his Scottish pastoral comedy of " The Gentle 

The melody of this ancient song has latterly been mo- 
delled into a reel tune, in common time, now called " The 
Braes of Auchtertyre." — See GoWs Repository/, volume i. 
page 20. The editor of the Repository, indeed, says that 
the reel tune is the progenitor of the melody of the song. A 
slight examination of facts, however, leads us to a very oppo- 
site conclusion. The melody of the song, even in Ramsay 
and M'Gibbon's days, was known to be very ancient^ whereas 
the reel tune was modelled from the old air, about the year 
1723, by James Crockat, son of the lady to whom the old 
manuscript Music-book originally belonged, which has been 
so frequently referred to in the course of this work. James 
Crockat gave his reel tune the strange title of " How can I 
keep my Maiden-head," which was the first line of an old in- 
delicate song, now deservedly forgotten. The first attempt 
to make the old tune into a reel, in the hand- writing of 
James Crockat, is now in the possession of the Editor. 
Bremner altered the old title, and published the tune, about 
the year 1 764, under the name of " Lennox's Love to Blan- 
tyre." It is now called " The Braes of Auchtertyre." Many 
of our modern reel tunes, strathspeys, jigs, &c. are indeed 
palpably borrowed from the subjects of our ancient vocal 
melodies. Several instances of this fact have already been 
pointed out in the preceding part of this work, and the 
reader will find more of them in the eourse of the sequel. 

The old tune of " O, dear Minny, what shall I do," has 
been so loaded with modern alterations, that it can scarcely 
be recognized. The following set of the tune, from an ancient 
manuscript, is therefore annexed, I have adapted it to the 
first stanza of the orimnal verses. 






O DEAR miu-ny, what shall I do? O dear mln-ny. 


what shall I do? O dear mm-nj', what shall I do? 


Daft thing-, doylt thing, do as I do. If I be black, I 



canna be lo'ed ; If I be fair, I canna be gude ; If I look 



lordly, the lads Avill look by nie. O dear min - iij^, 


what shall I do? 


This tune, together with the words adapted to it, were 
transmitted by Burns to the editor of the Museum, as an 
original song, and perhaps our bard really believed it to be 
so. But the first strain of the melody is almost note for note 
the same as that of the old air of " Hey, Jenny, come down 
to Jock," and the musical reader will have no difficulty in 
tracing the second strain to the latter part of the melody of 
" Saw ye Johnie coming, quo' she," thrown into slow jig 
time. This tune, therefore, is clearly a modern melody 
compiled from these two older airs. The anonymous writer 
of the Scottish words appears to have taken the hint from 
one of Ophelia'^s songs in the tragedy of Hamlet. 



This fine melody is the composition of Oswald, and ap- 
pears in the first volume of his Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, page 24, under the title of " Alloway House." In 
the original index to that volume, there is an asterisk (*) 
prefixed to the name of the tune, to denote that Oswald was 
the composer. The song, beginning " The spring returns, 
and clothes the green plains," was written by the late Rever- 
end Dr Alexander Webster, one of the ministers of Edin- 
burgh, who projected the praise-worthy scheme for providing 
a fund for the Widows of the established Clergy of Scotland, 
which has since been established with the most beneficial 
effects. I have hitherto been unable to ascertain the locality 
of this song, as the name is spelled in two different ways, 
Alloway by the composer of the air, and Alloa by the writer 
of the song. Alloway is a parish in Ayrshire, now of classi- 
cal celebrity from its having given birth to Robert Burns, 
our great national bard. But Alloa House, or the Tower of 
Alloa, which is the scene of Dr Webster's song, is situated 
near a village of the same name in the county of Clackman- 
nan. This tower was built about the 13th century, and was, 
along with the estate, exchanged by David II. in 1365, with 
Lord Erskine, progenitor of the Earls of Mar, for the lands 
of Stragarthney in Perthshire. It is still the favourite resi- 
dence of the Erskines of Mar, who are descended of that 
ancient and noble family. 



There are two songs to this old air in the Museum, the 
first, beginning " Peggy, now the King's come," was written 
by Ramsay for Mause, one of the characters in his Gentle 
Shepherd. The second song, beginning " Carl an' the King 
come," is partly old and partly modern, the second stanza 
being written by Burns. The remainder of the verses are 
said to have been composed during the usurpation of Crom- 


well. A more complete, but modernized, copy of the song, 
however, may be seen in Hogg's Jacobite Reliques, vol. i. 


This fine song was originally published by Napier as a 
single sheet song, from which it was copied into the Museum ; 
but neither the author nor the composer are yet known. An 
excellent parody of the older verses, by a modern hand, and 
set to a beautiful tune, composed by Miss Grace Corbet, is 
inserted in the sixth volume of the Museum, see Notes on 
song No 583, entitled " O Mary, ye'se be clad in Silk." Ur- 
ban! reprinted this latter song in his Collection, under the 
title of " I'll lay me down and die." 


This song, beginning " By the stream so cool and clear,'" 
is a translation, by Mr M'Donald, of a favourite Gaelic song 
sung by the natives of St Kilda, the most remote of the 
Western Isles of Scotland, to the same air which is inserted 
in the Museum. Mr Charles Stewart reprinted the words 
and music from the Museum, in the second volume of his 
Vocal Miscellany, pubhshed in 1798. 


This beautiful Scottish Melody is very ancient, and is in- 
serted in Mrs Crockat's MSS. written in 1709. The verses 
to which it was originally adapted, though still pi-eserved, 
are too indelicate for insertion. It is one of those songs, with 
respect to which the Reverend William Geddes, in the pre- -, 
face to his Saint's Recreation, written in 1673, very pertinent- { ; 
ly observes, " it is alleged by some, and that not without some 1 1 
colour of reason, that many of our airs or tunes are made by '{ ^ 
good angels, but the lines of our songs by devils." J % 

The verses adapted to the tune in the Museum, beginning ' 
" Beneath a green shade," were written by Ramsay as a sub- 


stitute for the old words ; and Thomson, in his Orpheus Cale- 

donius, adapted Ramsay's verses to the original air, in 1725. 

As Ramsay's verses were still considered by some people as 

partaking too much of the rude simplicity of the olden time, 

Burns endeavoured to supply the defect, in the composition 

of the following exquisite Scottish ballad to the same air, 

written in spring 1793. 


Tune— The Mill, Mill, O. 

When wild war's deadly blast was blawn. 

And gentle peace returning, 
Wi' mony a sweet babe fatherless. 

And mony a widow mourning : 
I left the lines and tented field. 

Where lang I'd been a lodger. 
My humble knapsack a' my wealth, 

A poor and honest sodger. 
A leal light heart was in my breast. 

My hand unstain'd wi' plunder ; 
'And for fair Scotia, hame again, 

I cheery on did wander : 
I thought upon the banks o' Coil, 

1 thought upon my Nancy, 
I thought upon the witching smile 

That caught my youthful fancy : 
At length I reach'd the bonny glen. 

Where early life I sported ; 
I pass'd the mill, and try sting thorn. 

Where Nancy aft I courted : 
Wha spied I, but my ain dear maid, 

Down by her mother's dwelling ! 
And turn'd me round to hide the flood 

That in my een was swelling. 
Wi' alter'd voice, quoth I, sweet lass. 

Sweet as yon hawthorn's blossom, 
! happy, happy may he be. 

That's dearest to thy bosom ! 
My purse is light, I've far to gang. 

And fain would be thy lodger, 
I've serv'd my king and country lang— 

Take pity on a sodger. 


Sae wistfully she gaz'd on me, 

And lovelier was than ever: 
Quo' she, a sodger ance I lo'ed, 

Forget him shall I never : 
Our humble cot, and hamely fare. 

Ye freely shall partake it ; 
That gallant badge, the dear cockade, 

Ye're welcome for the sake o't. 


She gaz'd — she redden'd like a rose — 

Syne pale like ony lily ; 
She sank within my arms, and cried^, 

Art thou my ain dear Willie ? 
By Him who made yon sun and sky — 

By whom true love's regarded, 
I am the man ; and thus may still 

True lovers be rewarded. 


The wars are o'er, and I'm come hame, 

And find thee still true-hearted ; 
Tho' poor in gear, we're rich in love. 

And mair we'se ne'er be parted. 
Quo' she, my grandsire left me gowd, 

A mailen plenish'd fairly ; 
And come, my faithfu' sodger lad, 

Thou'rt welcome to it dearly. 


For gold the merchant ploughs the main. 

The farmer ploughs the manor ; 
But glory is the sodger's prize ; 

The sodger's wealth is honour: 
The brave poor sodger ne'er despise. 

Nor count him as a stranger j 
Remember he's his country's stay. 

In day and hour of danger. 

Burns, in a letter to Mr George Thomson, dated June, 

1793, and published in the fourth volume of Dr Currie's 

edition of his works, says, " I cannot alter the disputed 

lines in The Mill, Mill, O ! What you think a defect, I 

esteem as a positive beauty ; so you see how doctors differ." 

These lines were the third and fourth of stanza first. 

Wi' mony a sweet babe fatherless. 
And mony a widow mourning. 

In place of these lines, Mr Thomson, in the first volume of 


his Collection, and it seems by advice of William Erskine, 
Esq. substituted the following : 

And eyes again ivith pleasure heam'd, 
That had been blear d with mourning. 

These lines are much inferior to the original, and Mr 
Thomson, in a late edition of the same publication, saw the 
propriety of reprinting the ballad as the Bard originally wrote 
it. Mr Gay selected this tune for one of his songs in " Pol- 
ly," beginning " When gold is on hand it gives us com- 
mand ;■" printed, but not acted, in London, 1729. 


Both the words and music of this elegant and pathetic 
song were taken from a single sheet, printed at London 
about the year 1788, and sold by Joseph Dale, No 19, 
Cornhill, " sung by Master Knyvett." From these cir- 
cumstances, I am led to conclude that it is a modern Anglo- 
Scottish production, especially as it does not appear in any 
of the old collections of our songs. If it be an imitation of 
the Scottish style, however, it is a very successful one. 
ccxLiv. ■* 

Tune — Herring and Salt. 

Mr John Stafford Smith, in the first volume of his 
Musica Antiqua, published at London in 1812, gives us the 
following words of " A very Popular Song in the early part 
of Henry the Eighth's Reign." 

Joan, quoth John, when wyll this be ? 
Tell me when wilt thou marrie me. 
My come, and eke my calf and rents. 
My lands, and all my tenements .'' 
Saie Joan, said John, what wilt thou doe .'' 
I cannot come every day to woe. 

Mr Smith, in the same work, also gives the original air to 
these words, with a bass of his own composition, and affirms, 
that the Scots have borrowed their old song of " I canna 
come ilka Day to woo," from this English source. But there 


is not the smallest ground for such a conjecture. The old 
Scottish air is totally different from the English one. The 
former, which is uncommonly cheerful and lively, and ex- 
tremely well-adapted to the nature and spirit of the words, 
bears the marks of genuine antiquity : it commences on the 
third, and ends on the fifth of the key. The latter is a stiff 
and awkward tune, and is as opposite to the general style of 
the old Scottish airs as night is to day. The incidents in 
both songs are Hkewise totally different. The solitary line, " I 
cannot come every day to woo," is no doubt nearly the same 
in both copies ; but if the composer of either of these songs 
did borrow a line at all, it is just as likely that the English 
poetaster took his line from the old humorous Scottish ballad, 
as that the minstrel who framed the latter borrowed a single 
phrase from such a composition as that published so lately 
for the first time by Mr Smith. Is it not absurd to affirm, 
that the Scots have laid claim to an English song, which has 
not the least affinity to their own Scottish song, either in 
sound or in sense ? 

David Herd has preserved a fragment of a song, apparent- 
ly still older than that inserted in the Museum, which is here 

I HAE layen three herring a' sa't ; 

Bonnie lass^ gin ze'U tak me, tell me now ; 
And I hae brew'n three pickles o' ma t. 

And I cannae cum ilka day to woo. 

Chorus — To woo, to woo, to lilt and to luoo. 
And I cannae cum ilka day to woo. 
To ivoo, to ivoo, to lilt and to woo. 
And I cannae cum, ilka day to woo 

I hae a wee calf that wad fain be a cow ; 
Bonnie lass, gin ze'll tak me, tell me now ; 
I hae a grice that wad fain be a sow. 
And I cannae cum ilka day to woo. 

Chorus — To tvoo, to woo, to lilt and to ivoo. 
And I cannae cum, ilka day to woo. 
To woo, to ivoo, to lilt and to woo. 
And I cannae cum ilka day to ivoo. 


Burns, in a letter to Mr George Thomson, dated Sept. 
1798, and published in Dr. Currie's edition of his works, 
vol. iv. says, " AVhat is your opinion of / hae laid a Her- 
ring in Sawt 9 I hke it much." It does not appear that Mr 
Thomson gave the bard any answer to his question. 


This beautiful song, beginning " Sweet nursling of the 
tears of morning," was written and composed by the late Mrs 
Scott of Wauchope. Johnson told me this himself. 


BunNs, in his Reliques, says, " This song is by Dr 
Blacklock. I believe, but am not quite certain, that the air 
is his too." — Reliques. 

Mr Johnson informed me, that both the air and words 
were composed by Dr Blacklock, on purpose for the Mu- 
seum. Mr Clarke only added the bass part. 


This masterly ballad, beginning " When the sheep are in 
the fauid," is the composition of Lady Ann Lindsay, eldest 
daughter of the late James, Earl of Balcarras, by his Count- 
ess, Ann Dalrymple, daughter of Sir Robert Dalrymple of 
Castletoun, Bart. Lady Ann was born on the 8th of De- 
cember 1750, and married in 1793 to Andrew Bernard, Esq. 
secretary to the colony at the Cape of Good Hope. She sur- 
vived her husband, who died on the 27th October 1807, 
without issue. 

The tune to which the verses were originally adapted is 
preserved in the Museum. It was formerly called " The 
Bridegroom greets whan the Sun gangs down," which was, in 
all probability, a line of an old song now lost or forgotten. 
A friend informs me, that he has heard two lines of it. 

But, oh ! quo' he, it's come o'er soon. 

The bridegroom grat when the sun's?aed down.. 


It is very remarkable, that such an exquisite ballad as 
Auld Robin Gray should have been produced by so young 
an authoress. It was written in the year 1770, when her 
ladyship was only in the twentieth year of her age. 

There is a beautiful English air to the same ballad, which 
was composed by the Reverend William Leeves of Wrington. 
This gentleman, in the preface to " Six Sacred Airs or Hymns, 
intended as a domestic Sunday-evening"'s recreation," com- 
posed by himself, acquaints us, that in the year 1770, when 
residing with his family at Richmond in Surry, he received, 
from the Honourable Mrs Byron, a copy of Lady Ann Lind- 
say's verses, which he immediately set to music. He then 
adds, '*> it may not be unsatisfactory to declare, which can 
be done with the clearest conscience, that he never heard of 
any other music than his own being applied to these inte- 
resting words, till many years after that was produced to 
which he now asserts an undivided claim : That his friend, 
Mr Hammersley, was well acquainted with this ballad, long 
before its surreptitious appearance in print ; and the still more 
convincing testimony might be added of a respectable rela- 
tion now residing at Bath, (12th June 1812) who was on a 
visit to the author's family at Richmond when the words 
were received, and the first manuscript (of the music) pro- 

Mr Leeves has annexed a copy of the music, as originally 
composed by him, adapted to Lady Ann's verses, at the end 
of the above work, published by T. Birchall, New Bond 
Street, London, in 1812. On the title-page there is an en- 
graved vignette, representing Jenny seated at her spinning- 
wheel in conversation with her mother. The old woman 
appears in a standing postvire, supporting herself with a 
crutch in one hand, and pointing towards Heaven with the 
other, as if admonishing her daughter to submit with cheer- 
fulness and becoming resignation to the Divine will. Jenny 
seems to listen attentively to her mother's affectionate advice, 
while her hand is directed to a book, which has the word 


Bible on its cover, implying, no doubt, that she would hum- 
bly endeavour to make that sacred volume the constant 
rule of her faith and conduct. On an appropriate scroll are 
the following words : — 

I darna think of JamiCj, 
For that wad be a sin ! 
Sae I'll do my best^ 
A glide wife to be ; 
For Auld Robin Gray 
Is kind to me. 

There is some ingenuity in the design of this little vig- 
nette. The reverend author probably intended to point out 
the moral of the song, viz. a pious resignation to the decrees 
of the Almighty ; but the engraving is not well executed. 

The celebrated Mrs Billington was very fond of this bal- 
lad, as set by Mr Leeves. She used to sing it frequently in 
public, and was always rapturously encored. We shall con- 
clude the remarks on this song with the following quotation : 

« Mr Pinkerton, after observing, that none of the ' Scotch 
amatory ballads,' as he remembers, ' are written by ladies,*" 
and that the ' profligacy of manners, which always reigns be- 
fore women can so utterly forget all sense of decency and 
propriety as to commence authors, is yet almost unknown in 
Scotland,' adds, in a note, that ' there is, indeed, of very 
late years, one insignificant exception to this rule : Auld Ro- 
bin Gray having got his silly psalm set to soporific music, is, 
to the credit of our taste, popular for the day. But, after 
lulling some good-natured audiences asleep, he will soon fall 
asleep himself Little Ritson, with a becoming boldness 
and indignation at the author of these ungracious and un- 
gallant remarks, steps forward with his accustomed Bantam- 
cock courage, and thus strikes at the hard forehead of Pin- 
kerton. ' Alas ! this silly psalm will continue to be sung, 
to the credit of our taste, long after the author of this equally 
ridiculous and malignant paragraph shall be as completely 
forgotten as yesterday's ephemeron, and his printed trash be 
only occasionally discernible at the bottom of a pye. Of the 



24 Scottish song-writers whose names are preserved, four, 
if not five, are females; and, as poetesses, two more might be 
added to the number." — See Scottish Songs, with RemarJcs by 
Burns, editedbyCromeli^vol.n.p.^^. London,l8l0. From the 
kindness of Miss Dundas of St Andrew's Square, in this city, 
I am enabled to present the reader with a genuine copy of 
the music of this celebrated ballad, from the author's own 


Words by Lady Ann Lindsay. Music by the Rev. Mr William Leeves 
of Wrington. 



iii|z zg=3J=j z ^fZ^^ 


^ ^ ^ ^ 

When the sheep are in the 





jEiE l 



(H — ^ — 1 

( fauldj and a' the kye at hame^ And a' the wea-ry 




m- F- 




warld to sleep ai-e gane. 

The waes 0' my 


»' r - "■' 

pzi — zg_^-_^p:_j- — 


heart fa' in show - ers frae my e'e^ 








my gude - man sleeps sound by me. 










6 5 
4 3 

^g^:g g^^ lJc^g 

Youngf Jamie lo'ed mc weel, and ask'd me for his 

^V:S: 6 

6 5 

4 3 


-jj — — — — — ^g; — j 
bride. But, sav-ing a crown, he had naething else be-side ; To 


6 5 
4 3 


make the crown a pound, my Ja-mie gade to sea. And the 



^\.. ■■■.— [—...I ■ ,. L— m,pL-,.i^- i_, « »n[— 



crown and the pound were baith for me. He had nae been 

6 6 k^ e 5 TT *=! 


e 5 

4 3 






^^gg^p^5 i3 = gSS 


gane a yeai* and a day, When my father brak his arm, and our 


^ tl b 6 6 




* — ^ 



_l ^—r-r 


— 5t« 

y covy was stown a - way ; My mi- ther she fell sick, and 







« — jr 

Jamie at the sea. And auld Robin Gray came a-courting to me. 






6 6 6 5 

4 3 



This song is improperly titled in the Museum. It ought 
to have been called, " Were I assur'd you'd constant prove," 
Avritten by Allan Ramsay to the tune of " Leith Wynd," 
But the tune itself is in fact the identical melody of " Come, 
hap me with your Petticoat," which was the homely old title 
of the song. — See Remarks on the Sung No 139, in the Mu- 


About the year 1700, Adam Craig varied the old melody 
a httle, and dignified it with the new title of " Leith Wynd," 
(a well-known street in Edinburgh), and he afterwards pub- 
lished it in his Collection of Scots Tunes, dedicated to the 
Lords and Gentlemen of the Musical Society in Mary's 
Chapel, in the year 1730. 

The verses in the Museum, beginning " Were I assured 
you"'d constant prove," were written by Ramsay as a song 
for Jenny and Roger, in his pastoral comedy of " The 
Gentle Shepherd." 


This fine air was formerly adapted to some witty, but 
indelicate verses, a fragment of which is preserved in Herd's 
Collection. The humorous song in the Museum, beginning 
*' First when Maggie was my care," was written by Burns 
in 1789, as a substitute for the old verses. 

The air was composed about the year 1720, by John 
Bruce, a musician in the town of Dumfries, and Oswald 
afterwards published it with variations in the last volume of 
his Caledonian Pocket Companion. 


This song, beginning " In winter when the rain rain'd 
cauld," had found its way into England as early as the com- 
mencement of the reign of Queen Elizabeth, if not before ; 
for it was a common song in Shakspeare's time, who quotes 
a verse of it in the drinking scene in his tragedy of Othello, 
act ii. scene iii. An English version of the song' is also in- 
serted in the ancient manuscript belonging to Bishop Per- 
cy, who has favoured the public with a copy of it in his 
Reliques of Ancient Poetry, vol. i. p. 172, edition 1765. The 
Scottish song was first printed in Ramsay's Tea-Table Mis- 

The old air is admirably adapted to the words, and is un- 
doubtedly coeval with them. Many of these ancient melo- 


dies have been preserved, and handed down from generation 
to generation by oral communication alone, long before the 
modern system of musical notation was perfected. 


This song should have been titled " Hid from himself 
now by the Dawn," written by Allan Ramsay to the tune of 
" The Happy Clown."" Ramsay wrote this song for Sir 
William Worthy, in his pastoral comedy of " The Gentle 
Shepherd.'' The tune is inserted in Mrs Crockat's MS. 
written in 1709. It was one of the airs selected by Mr Gay 
for his song in the Beggar's Opera, beginning rm like a sMff ^ 
in the ocean tosty acted at London in 1728. But, prior to 
this period, it had also been adapted to another song, begin- 
ning " One evening as- 1 lost my way. 

The original words of " The Happy Clown," are preserv- 
ed in the Tea-Table Miscellany of 1724. As they possess 
no small share of poetic merit, we here annex them. 


How happy is the rural clown. 

Who, far remov'd from noise of town. 

Contemns the glory of a crown. 

And in his safe retreat. 

Is pleased with his low degree. 

Is rich in decent poverty. 

From strife, from care and business free. 

At once baith good and great ! 

No di-ums disturb his morning sleep. 
He fears no danger of the deep. 
Nor noisy law, nor courts ne'er heap 
Vexation on his mind ; 
No trumpets rouse him to the war. 
No hopes can bribe, nor threats can dare ; 
From state intrigues he holds afar. 
And liveth unconfin'd. 

Like those in golden ages born. 
He labours gently to adorn 
His small paternal fields of com. 
And on their product feeds ; 


Each season of the wheelhig year, 
Industrious he improves with care; 
And still some ripened fruits appear. 
So well his toil succeeds. 


Now by a silver stream he lies. 
And angles with his baits and flies ; 
And next the silvan scene he tries 
His spirits to regale : 
Now from the rock or height he views 
His fleecy flock or teeming cows. 
Then tunes his reed, or tries his muse. 
That waits his honest call. 


Amidst his harmless easy joys. 
No care his peace of mind destroys, 
Nor does he pass his time in toys 
Beneath his just regard : 
He's fond to feel the zephyr's breeze. 
To plant and sned his tender trees ; 
And for attending well his bees 
Enjoys the sweet reward. 


The flow'ry meads, and silent coves. 
The scenes of faithful rural loves. 
The warbling birds in blooming groves. 
Afford a wish'd dehght. 
But O ! how pleasant is this life. 
Blest with a chaste and virtuous wife. 
And children prattling, void of strife. 
Around his fire at night. 


This fine ballad is the composition of Hector Macneil, 
Esq. author of the celebrated poem of " Will and Jean," 
and other popular works. Mr Macneil told me, that he 
wrote this song to commemorate the death of his friend Cap- 
tain Stewart, a gallant officer (betrothed to a young lady in 
Atholl) who fell at the battle of Saratoga in America, in the 
year 1777. On this unfortunate occasion, the British troops 
were commanded by General Burgoyne. 

The words are adapted to a fine old Gaelic air. 

In the Museum, the song is printed as it was originally 
written, but the author has subsequently altered and correct- 


ed some of the stanzas. The reader is therefore presented 
with an accurate copy of this lyrical composition ; and, upon 
comparing it with the copy inserted in the Scots Musical 
Museum, he will be enabled to discover the late improve- 
ments made on it by its author. 

When merry hearts were gay, 
Careless of aught but play. 
Poor Flora slipt away, 

Sad'nmg to Mora*^ 
Loose flow'd her yellow hair. 
Quick heav'd her bosom bare. 
As to the troubled air 

She vented her sorrow. 

" Loud howls the stormy west. 
Cold, cold is winter's blast ; 
Haste then, O ! Donald, haste. 

Haste to thy Flora ! 
Twice twelve long months are o'er. 
Since on a foreign shore 
You promis'd to fight no more, 

But meet me in Mora. 

'' ' Where now is Donald dear.''' 
Maids cry with taunting sneer, 
' Say, is he still sincere 

To his lov'd Flora ?' 
Parents upbraid my moan ; 
Each heart is tum'd to stone — 
Ah ! Flora thou'rt now alone. 

Friendless in Mora ! 


" Come then, 0, come away ! 
Donald, no longer stay. 
Where can my rover stray 

From his lov'd Flora ? 
Ah ! sure he ne'er can be 
False to his vows and me : 
O Heaven ! — is not yonder he 

Bounding o'er Mora ! 

Mora is the name of a small valley in Athole, so named by the two lovers. 


" Never^ ah, wretched fair !' 
(Sigh'd the sad messenger,) 
Never shall Donald niair 

Meet his lov'd Floka ! 
Cold as yon mountain snow, 
Donald, thy love lies low. 
He sent me to sooth thy woe. 

Weeping in Mora. 


" Well fought our gallant men 
On Saratoga's plain ; 
Thrice fled the hostile train 

From British glory. 
But, ah ! tho' our foes did flee. 
Sad was each victory : 
Youth, love, and loyalty. 

Fell far from Moka. 


" ' Here take this love-wrought plaid,' 
Donald expiring said ; 
' Give it to yon dear maid 

Drooping in Mora. 
Tell her, O Allan tell, 
Donald thus bravely fell. 
And that in his last farewell 

He' thought on his Flora." 


Mute stood the trembling fair. 
Speechless with wild despair ; 
Then, striking her bosom bare, 

Sigh'd out — " Poor Flora ! 
Ah I Donald ! ah, well-a-day !" 
Was all the fond heart could say : 
At length the sound died away. 

Feebly, in Mora. 


This song was written by Ramsay, for Patie and Peggy, 
in his pastoral comedy of " The Gentle Shepherd.'' The 
words and music were inserted in the Orpheus Caledonius. 


Tins is another production of Ramsay, inserted in the 
same comedy, and is, in fact, the chorus of the song last 



mentioned. The airs to No 253 and 254 appear to have 
been composed expressly for Ramsay's verses, by one of his 
musical friends and contemporaries, as they do not appear in 
any collection prior to 1725. Both these songs were insert- 
ed, without music, in the pastoral of Patie and Peggy, which 
was published some years before Ramsay wrote his comedy 
of the Gentle Shepherd. 

This song was written by Bums in 1789, on purpose for 
the Museum. It is adapted to the fine plaintive tune of " My 
Love is lost to me," which was composed by Oswald, and pub- 
lished in the fifth volume of his Caledonian Pocket Compa- 
nion, page 25. Mrs Burns is the lady alluded to by our poet. 


The words of this song, beginning " Ullin, Carill, and 
Ryno," are taken from the conclusion of the seventh book 
of Temora, an epic poem, by Ossian, translated by Mac- 
pherson. The music, which is extremely characteristic, was 
composed by Oswald. 


This song, beginning " Dear Myra, the captive ribband's 
mine," is another unclaimed production of Burns. The words 
are adapted to a Gaelic air, called " Robie donna gorrach," or 
" Daft Robin." This air is evidently a slight alteration of the 
fine old triple time tune, entitled " Earl Douglas's Lament," 
which may be seen in Oswald's Collection, book vii. page 30. 


" This air (says Burns) is claimed by Neil Gow, who 
calls it the Lament for his Brother. The first half stanza 
of the song is old — the rest is mine." Reliques. Mr Cro- 
mek informs us, that he had a memorandum-book in his 
possession, in which the venerable portrait of this national 

242 ccLVin.— there's a youth in this city. 

musician is thus drawn by Burns, with his usual characteris- 
tic strength and expression : — " A short, stout-built, honest 
Highland figure, with his grayish hair shed on his honest 
social brow ; an interesting face, marking strong sense, kind 
open-hearted ness, mixed with unmistrusting simplicity." — 
Neil Gow was born in Strathbrand, Perthshire, in the year 
1727, and died in the eightieth year of his age, at Inver, 
near Dunkeld, on the 1st of March, 1807. A writer in the 
Scots Magazine very justly observes, " that although Mr 
Neil Gow had raised himself to independent and affluent cir- 
cumstances in his old age, he continued free of every appear- 
ance of vanity or ostentation. He retained, to the last, the 
same plain and unassuming simplicity in his carriage, his 
dress, and his manners, which he had observed in his early 
and more obscure years. His figure was vigorous and man- 
ly ; and the expression of his countenance spirited and in- 
telligent. His whole appearance, indeed, exhibited so char- 
acteristic a model of what national partiality conceives a 
Scottish Highlander to be, that his portrait has been repeat- 
edly copied. An admirable likeness of him was painted, a 
few years ago, for the Honourable Mr Maule of Panmure, 
M. P. for Forfarshire, by Mr Raeburn ; and he has been 
introduced into the View of a HigJiland Wedding, by 
the late ingenious Mr Allan, to whom he was requested 
to sit for the purpose." The late Rev. Mr Graham, author 
of The Sabbath, also published the following tributary verses 
to his memory : 

*' The blythe strathspey springs up, remindhig some 
Of nights when Gow's old arm, (nor old the tale). 
Unceasing, save when reeking cans went round. 
Made heart and heel leap light as bounding roe, 
Alas ! no more shall we behold that look 
So venerable, yet so bl^nt with mirth, 
And festive joy sedate ; that ancient garb 
Unvaried ; tartan hose and bonnet blue ! 
No more shall beavUy's partial eye draw forth 
The full intoxication of his strain 
Mellifluous, strong, exuberantly rich ! 
No moie amid the pauses of the dance 
Shall li^ repeat those measures, that, in days 

ccLviii. — theee's a yoltth in this city. 243 

of other years^ could sooth a falling prince. 
And light his visage with a transient smile 
Of melancholy joy, like autumn sun 
Gilding a sere tree with a passing beam ! 
Or play to sportive children on the green. 
Dancing at gloamin' hours, on willing cheer. 
With strains unbought, the shepherd's bridal day." 

British Georgics, p. 81. 


The first half stanza of this song (says Burns) is old — the 
rest is mine. See Reliques. The words are adapted to a 
Gaelic air, called " Failte na moisg,"' or, " The Musket 
Salute,*" inserted in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, 
volume first, page 22. 


The following original words of this very ancient song 
are preserved in Bishop Percy's old manuscript, written as 
early, if not before the year 1560. 

John Anderson, my jo, cum in as ze gae by, 
And ze sail get a sheip's held weel baken in a pye ; 
Weel baken in a pye, and the haggis in a pat ; 
John Anderson, my jo, cum in, and ze's get that. ; 

And how doe ze, cummer ? and how doe ze thrive .'* 
And how mony bairns hae ze ? 
Cummer, I hae five. 
Are they to your awin gudeman .? 
Na, cummer, na — 
For three of tham were gotten quhan Willie was awa. 

This John Anderson, if we may rely on an uniform and 
constant tradition, was, of old, the town-piper of Kelso, and 
an amorous wag in his day. About the period of the Refor- 
mation in Scotland, however, the last verse of the above song 
was slightly altered, and transferred from a real or supposed 
incident in private life, to the public tenets of the Catholic 
church. Luther, Calvin, Beza, and^Knox, had already de- 
monstrated and exposed the fallacy of any other sacraments 


than those expressly authorized and sanctioned by Sacred 
Writ, namely, baptism and the Lord''s supper. The church 
of Rome, nevertheless, had introduced five additional sacra- 
ments into her ritual vist. 1 , The sacrament of penitence. 
2. The sacrament of confirmation. 3. The sacrament of ex- 
treme unction. 4. The sacrament of ordination. And, 5. 
The sacrament of marriage. These five sacraments were re- 
jected by the reformed church as spurious and unauthorized. 
The stanza above alluded to ran thus : 

And how doe ze cummer ? and how hae ze thriven ? 
And how mony bairns hae ze ? 

Cummer, I hae seven. 
Are they to your awin gudeman ? 

Na, cummer, na ; 
For Jive o' them were gotten quhan he was far awa. 

Bishop Percy, and Mr Tytler, who follows the prelate's 
opinion, were mistaken in asserting that the tunes to such 
songs, as John Anderson — Green Sleeves — John, come hiss me 
now — Maggy Lauder — Kind Robin loes me, &c. &c. original- 
ly belonged to the most favourite hymns in the Latin ser- 
vice, which had been burlesqued by the reformers. The 
fact is quite otherwise. The ancient humorous Scottish 
songs are not indebted to the Catholic church either for their 
words or their music. On the contrary, the earliest Scottish 
reformers called into their religious service the beautiful airs 
of that kingdom, and adapted them to Godly and Spiritual 
Songs, collected out qfsundrie parts of Scripture, for avoid- 
ing sinne and harlotrie, in 1549. Nay, more, they even 
parodied and spiritualized some of the most favourite secular 
songs, such as Fll never leave thee ! — Low down in the Broom 
— Up in the Morning early — Hey now the Day daws, &c. &c. 
as we know, not only from the testimony of the Rev. William 
Geddes, but likewise from their own " Compendious Booke." 
The music of the ancient Latin service was strictly confined 
to what was denominated the eight modes of the church ; 



four of which were reckoned authentic, and four plagal. — 
Now almost every old Scottish tune runs counter to these 
rules of church composition. Hence it may reasonably be 
inferred, that many of those old melodies existed, and were 
chanted by the natives of this part of the island, before the 
church of Rome existed. The hymns, and indeed the whole 
service of the Roman church, it will be recollected, were 
written in Latin, and it may be presumed that most of the 
reforming wits of that age were too imperfectly acquainted 
with this language to burlesque them. A copy of the Latin 
hymns set to music, which was used in the cathedral of Dun- 
keld, escaped the flames at the Reformation, and is preserved 
in the library of the college of Edinburgh. It consists of five 
thin quarto volumes. After having perused them with the 
most scrupulous care and attention, from beginning to end, 
I have been unable to detect a single musical phrase that has 
the smallest resemblance to any of our national tunes. The 
work is just now lying on my table, having been sent to me 
for examination and perusal by the very reverend Principal 
Baird. I have also examined a still more extensive Roman 
service-book, which formerly belonged to the abbey of Scone, 
now in the Advocate's Library at Edinburgh, and do not find 
one church tune having the least resemblance whatever to any 
of our Scottish melodies. 

The tune of "John Anderson, my Jo," though long handed 
down by oral communication, was committed to paper a3 
early as 1578, in Queen Elizabeth's virginal-book, which is 
still preserved. Two beautiful stanzas, written by Burns in 
1789 for the Museum, are adapted to the air in that work. 
Since the death of our lamented bard, four additional stan- 
zas have appeared in a collection, entitled " Poetry original 
and selected," printed by Messrs Brash & Reid of Glasgow. 
With respect to these stanzas, Dr Currie justly remarks, 
" that every reader will observe they are by an inferior hand, 
and the real author of them ought neither to have given 
them, nor suffered them to be given to the world, as the pro- 
duction of Burns." 




The words and music of this beautiful song were sent to 
Johnson by an anonymous correspondent. Burns consider- 
ed it to be very deserving of a niche in the Museum, and 
Johnson accordingly inserted it in that work. The author 
is still unknown. 


This beautiful air was early introduced into England. 
Ritson says, that Durfey wrote the words, and sung them in 
" A Wife for any Man." If the words really are by Durfey, 
they do him little credit. But no such piece as this appears 
throughout the whole Biographia Dramatica, by Baker, Reed, 
and Jones, in 4 vols 8vo, London, 1812. In 1680, Dur- 
fey wrote " The Virtuous Wife," a very entertaining comedy, 
but not free from plagiarism, having borrowed several hints 
from Marston's Fawn, and the character of Beaufort from 
Palamede in Dryden's " Marriage a la Mode," and Beau- 
mont and Fletcher, in 1647, wrote a very good tragi-comedy, 
entitled " A Wife for a Month ;" but I have not been able 
to find the song in either of these plays. Both the words 
and the music appear in the first edition of the Pills in 1698, 
and the tune may be seen in a Collection of Original Scotch 
Tunes, published by Henry Playford the same year. Burns 
was uncommonly fond of this tune. In a letter to Mr Thom- 
son, printed in the fourth volume of Dr Currie's edition of 
the bard's works, he says, " I am out of temper that you 
should set so sweet, so tender an air, as Deil tak the Wars to 
the foolish old verses. You talk of the silliness of Saw ye 
my Father ? By Heavens ! the odds is gold to brass ! Besides, 
the old song, though now pretty well modernized into the 
Scottish language, is originally, and in the earlier editions, a 
bungling low imitation of the Scottish manner by that ge- 
nius Tom Durfey ; so it has no pretensions to be a Scottish 
production. There is a pretty English song by Sheridan, 



m the Duenna, to this air, which is out of sight superior to 
Durfey's. It begins ' When sable night each drooping 
plant restoring.' The air, if I understand the expression of 
it properly, is the very native language of simplicity and 

Burns wrote the two following stanzas to this tune, which 
he entitled " The Lover's Address to his Mistress." 

Sleep'st thoUj or wak'st thou, fairest creature ? 
- Rosy morn now lifts his eye. 

Numbering illta bud which Nature 
Waters wi' the tears o' joy. 

Now thro' the leafy woods, 

And by the reeking floods. 
Wild Nature's tenants freely, gladly stray ; 

The Imtwhite in his bower 

Chants o'er the breathing flower ; 

The lavrock to the sky 

Ascends wi' songs o' joy. 
While the sun and thou arise to bless the day. 


Phoebus gilding the brow o' morning, 
Banishes ilk darksome shade, 
Nature gladdening and adorning ; 
Such to me, my lovely maid. 

When absent frae my fair. 

The murky shades o' care. 
With starless gloom, o'ercast my sullen sky ; 

But when, in beauty's light. 

She meets ray ravish'd sight ; 

When through my very heart 

Her beaming glories dart, 
'Tis then I wake to life, to light, and joy. 

Burns remarks upon it, " I could easily throw this (song) 
into an English mould; but, to my taste, in the simple and 
tender of the pastoral song, a sprinkling of the old Scotch has 
an inimitable eifect." 


This is undoubtedly one of our oldest melodies. I have 
now lying before me a very ancient copy of it, in one strain, 
entitled " Oh, silly Soul, alace !" The second strain ap- 


pears to have been added to it, like many other of this kind, 
at a much later period, by a slight alteration of the first. 
The Jacobites selected this air for a song called " The Earle 
of Mar's Men," and another entitled " Awa, Whigs, awa," 
a fragment of which, with two additional stanzas, namely, the 
second and fourth, written by Burns, are printed in the Mu- 

A more complete copy of this Jacobite song may be seen 
in Hogg's Relics, vol. i. ; but it owes its perfection to mo- 
dern hands. The ancient air of " Oh, silly Soul, alace r 
is evidently the progenitor of the popular tune, called " What 
ails this Heart of mine ?" and " My Dearie an thou die."'"' 

Mb Stephen Clarke took down this song in 1787, when 
Burns and he were spending an evening with the Rev. Mr 
Clunie. Burns, however, added two stanzas to the song, 
and made several alterations on the old verses, but not in his 
happiest manner. The old verses follow : 

Ca the yowes to the knowes, 
Ca them where the heather growet, 
Cd them where the burnie rowes, 
My bonnie dearie. 

Will ye gang down yon water side. 
That thro' the glen does saftly glide. 
And I sail row thee in my plaid. 
My bonnie dearie ? 

Cd the yowes, <Sfc. 

Ye sail hae rings and ribbons meet. 
Calf-leather shoon upon your feet. 
And in my bosom ye sail sleep. 
My bonnie dearie. 

Cd the yowes, Sjc. 

I was brought up at nae sic school. 
My shepherd lad, to play the fool. 
Nor sit the livelong day in dool, 
Lanely and irie. 

Ca' the yowes, Sfc. 


Yon yowes and lammies on the plain, 
Wi' a' the gear my dad did hain, 
I'se gie thee, if thou'lt be mine ain. 
My bonnie dearie. 

Cd the yoives, S^c. 

Come weel, come wae, whate'er betide, 
Gin ye'll prove true, I'se be your bride. 
And ye sail row me in your plaid. 
My winsome dearie. 

Cd the yowes, S^c. 

Although the tune is not to be found in any collection 
prior to 1787, it bears internal marks of antiquity. It only 
consists of one strain of eight bars, yet the air is uncommonly 
wild and pleasing. In the Museum, the note C, answering 
to the first syllable of the word heather, ought to be made 

Burns, in one of his letters to Mr Thomson, dated in Sep- 
tember 1794, says, " I am flattered at your adopting * Ca' 
the yowes to the knowes,' as it was owing to me that it saw the 
light. About seven years ago, I was well acquainted with a 
worthy little fellow of a clergyman, a Mr Clunie, who sung 
it charmingly, and at my request Mr Clarke took it down 
from his singing. When I gave it to Johnson, I added some 
stanzas to the song, and mended others, but still it will not do 
for you. In a solitary stroll which I took to-day, I tried my 
hand on a few pastoral lines, following up the idea of the cho- 
rus, which I would preserve. Here it is, with all its crudities 
and imperfections on its head." 

Chorus.— Ca' the yoives to the knowes, 

Cd them where the heather growes, 
Cd them whare the burnie rowes. 
My bonnie dearie. 

Hark ! the mavis' evening sang 
Sounding Clouden's woods amang;* 

• Cluden, or Clouden, is a river in Dunafriesrshire, which takes its rise near the 
base of the Criffal mountains, and after a course of about fourteen miles falls 
into the Nith, nearly opposite to Lincluden College. It abounds with excellent 

250 ccLxiv. — ca' the kwes to the knowes. 

Then a faixlding let us gang. 
My bonnie dearie. 

Cd the yoioes, SjC. 

We'll gae down by Clouden side. 
Thro' the hazels spreading wide. 
O'er the waves that sweetly glide. 
To the moon sae clearly. 
Cd the 2/ owes, S^c. 

Yonder Clouden's silent towers. 
Where at moonshine midnight hours. 
O'er the dewy-bending flowers. 
Fairies dance sae cheery. 
Cd the yowes, &;c. 

Ghaist nor bogle shalt thou fear, 
Thou'rt to love and Heaven sae dear, 
Nocht of ill may come thee near. 
My bonnied earie. 

Cd the yowes, SfC. 

Fair and lovely as thou art. 
Thou hast stown my very heart ; 
I can die — but cannot part. 
My bonny dearie. 

Cd the yowes, S^-c. 



A Highland Song. 

The air and words of this Gaelic song, as well as the Eng- 
lish translation, were copied from Sibbald's Edinburgh Maga- 
zine for 1785. The same song was reprinted in " Albyn's An- 
thology," published in 1816, with the following note, by Mr 
Campbell, the editor of that work. 

" This original Hebridean air was noted dovni from the 
mouth of a young girl, a native of Lewis, by an accomplished 
lady, (a namesake of the editor) in 1781. In the Edinburgh 
Magazine, for anno 1785, this fragment (for it is no more,) 
will be found as given by the present editor to the late Mr 
James Sibbald." 


This very humorous, though somewhat licentious ballad, 
(words and music) is uniformly attributed to James V. of 


Scotland, about the year 1534!. It is said, that he composed 
it on an amour with a farmer's daughter, in whose house he 
had been accommodated with a night's lodging, while strolling 
about the country in the disguise of a mendicant. The laird 
of Brodie, mentioned in the ballad, is understood to have 
been the progenitor of the Brodies of that UK; one of the 
most ancient and respectable families in the north of Scot- 
land. It is of this ballad that Horace Walpole (afterwards 
Lord Orford) in his Catalogue of Royal and Noble authors, 
has remarked, that there is something very ludicrous in the 
picture of the young girl's distress on imagining that her first 
favour had been thrown away upon a beggar. King James 
died 14th December 1542, in the thirty-first year of his age. 


The two first stanzas of this song, in the Museum, were 
written by Mr Clunie, according to the authority of Burns. 
— See Currie''s Edition of Burns, vol, i. Appendix, No 2. But 
in Ritson's Collection, the reader will find the letters J. D. 
prefixed to the song, which is directed to be sung to the tune 
of " Happy Dick Dawson." If J. D. be the initial letters 
of the composer's name. Burns must have been misinformed. 

The four supplementary stanzas, beginning " Let others 
brag weel o' their geer," were composed by Hector Macneil, 
Esq. before noticed. Mr Macneil told me this himself. 

The musical reader will easily observe a striking affinity 
between the Scots air and the Irish tune called " My Lodging 
is on the cold Ground." 


Ramsay inserted a song, by an anonymous hand, to this 
lively old tune, beginning " Adieu, for a while, my native 
green plains," in the second volume of his Tea- Table Mis- 
cellany ; but he omitted the original song, beginning " As 
late by a soldier I chanced to pass," now inserted in the Mu- 


seum. The tune appears in Oswald's Collection, and in many 


This song was written by Alexander Ross, late school- 
master of Lochlee, in the county of Forfar. Mr Ross was 
born in the parish of Kincardine O'Neil, Aberdeenshire, 
about the year 1700. His father, who was a farmer in that 
country, gave him a suitable education, and he had the 
pleasure to see it well bestowed on such a son. His first 
settlement was at Birse, as parochial schoolmaster. He after- 
wards removed to Lochlee, in the same capacity, about the 
year 1733, and here he continued, in the centre of the Gram- 
pians, almost secluded from the converse of men and books, 
for the space of fifty years. Mr Ross died in May 1783. 
He was an excellent Latin scholar, and a pious and worthy 
man. He wrote " The Fortunate Shepherdess," a poem, in 
the Scottish language, and some songs, which were published 
for the author's behoof in 1768. He must have commenced 
poet at an early period, for " The Rock and the wee pickle 
Tow,'" is referred to in the 2d volume of Ramsay's Tea-Table 
Miscellany in 1728. He is likewise the author of " The 
Orphan,"" a poem, still unpublished. 

The verses, beginning " They say that Jock'll speed weel 
o't," are adapted to a well known Highland strathspey. In 
Angus Curaming's Collection of Old Reels and Strathspeys, 
it is called " Acharnac's Reel, or Bal nan Grantich ;" but in 
Gow's Collection, it goes under the name of " Lucy Camp- 
bell's Delight." 


The original copy of this humorous song, in the hand- 
writing of Burns, is now in my hands. It seems to be a 
whimsical allusion to his former occupation as a flax-dresser. 
" My twenty-third year (says he) was to me an important 
jera. Partly through whim, and partly that I wished to set 


about doing something in life, I joined a flax-dresser in a 
neighbouring town (Irwin) to learn his trade. This was an 
unfortunate affair." After informing us, that their lint- shop 
took fire and was burnt to ashes, and that he was left, like a 
true poet, without a sixpence, he proceeds, " to crown my 
distresses, a belle Jille whom I adored, and who had pledged 
her soul to meet me in the field of matrimony, jilted me with 
peculiar circumstances of mortification."" — See Currie's Life 
of Burns, vol. i. 

The tune to which the verses are set, by direction of the 
poet himself, on the top of the manuscript, is called " Boddich 
na 'rabrigis, or Lord Bredalbine's March," from Daniel Dow's 
Highland Airs. 


This elegiac song, beginning " Fate gave the word, the 
arrow sped," was written by Burns in 1789, and sent to 
Johnson for insertion in the Museum. Burns gave him, at 
the same time, positive instructions to set it to the air called 
" Finlayston House," which was composed by Mr John Rid- 
del, and Mr Clarke accordingly did so. 

In the Reliques, Burns says, " this most beautiful tune is, 
I think, the happiest composition of that bard-born genius, 
John Riddel, of the family of Glencarnock, at Ayr. The 
words were composed to commemorate the much lamented 
and premature death of James Fergusson, Esq. younger of 



This fragment of a Jacobite song, beginning " My love 
was born in Aberdeen," was published in Herd's Collection, 
vol. ii. page ITO, printed in 1770. The verses in the Mu- 
seum were retouched by Burns. The alterations are indeed 
few, yet they are evident improvements. A more complete 
version of the song, however, may be seen in the second 
volume of Hogg's Jacobite Relics. Mr O'Keefe selected 




this air for one of his songs in the opera of " The Highland 
Reel/' first acted at Covent Garden in 1788. 


A Gaelic Song. 

This is said to be an original Highland melody, and the 
verses, beginning " As on an eminence I stood musing," are 
said to be a correct metrical translation of the Gaelic song, 
by a lady from the Highlands, who had the kindness to com- 
municate them to Johnson, with the air. 

The editor has never seen the original Gaelic song; but he 
has no reason to doubt that there may be such a one, and 
that the English version is correct enough. It may be re- 
marked, however, that almost every Highland family of rank 
and fortune have long- been in the habit of sending: their 
children to the low country for their education, in which 
music has always been one of the principal ornamental 
branches. There cannot be a doubt, therefore, that the airs 
peculiar to Tweedside, Ettrick, Leader, Yarrow, Gala, &c. 
have long been as familiar to the Highlanders, as to the in- 
habitants of those Lowland pastoral districts where they 
had their origin. Many of them too, it is believed, have had 
the honour of being set to Gaelic verses. That the tune in 
question, however, is either of Gaelic or Irish extraction, 
seems to be very doubtful. For the editor has in his posses- 
sion a very old manuscript, in square notes, in which this 
identical tune, or at least one so very similar to it, is inserted 
under the name of " Y^ Auld Jew," of which a copy is 











« — i— ^ 



^— ^ 










The same tune, under the title of " The Old Jew," is 
printed in Oswald's Pocket Companion, book v. published 
in 1742 ; but he has corrupted the melody in several bars with 
spurious interpolations, in attempting to embellish it. 

In Eraser's Collection of Airs, in 1816, which we are told 
are peculiar to the Highlands and the Isles, there is a new 
set of this old tune, which he calls " Cuir a ghaoil dileas 
tharrum do lamh," translated, Place true love thine arm 
aro'dnd me, with the following note annexed : " This melody 
has long been clair^ied, and by many supposed to be Irish, 
the editor (Mr Fraser,) has heard many harpers play it in 
Ireland ; but on hearing his peogenitor's set of it, as sung 
in the Highlands, they absolutely, in spite of their national 
prejudices, relinquished their own claim, considering their 
own as an imperfect imitation of the original. The com- 
mencement of the third part, ' Tha binneas na bilibh, chan 
innis luchd cuil'e,"" ' There is melody in her voice which no 
music can equal,' is beautifully expressive, and perceptibly 
conveyed by the notes of the music." 

These Irish Harpers have certainly been very great wags. 
No fact is better understood, than that plainness and simpli- 
city are the invariable characteristics of every old lyric me- 
lody. Many of the most ancient only consist of one simple 
strain, and very few, if any, have more than two. 

Judging by this standard, the tune above inserted, as well 
as that in the Museum, with their kindred Irish air, are un- 
questionably old. But the same rule will not apply to the 
tune as given in this modern collection, which is indeed of a 
very different stamp. It consists of no less than four strains^ 



and the two last are so very florid, that Highland lasses, with 
organs even more flexible than those of a Billington or a Ca- 
talani, would find it a very difficult, if not an impossible mat- 
ter, to sing it with any good effect. That it is not only a mo- 
dern, but likewise a very clumsy fabrication, and quite fo- 
reign to the nature of vocal composition, the two following 
strains of it will sufficiently convince every intelligent musical 
reader; although, to use Mr Fraser's own words, they may be 
heautifully expressive^ and perceptibly conveyed hy the notes 
of the music. 










The Scots have often been sneered at by their Southern 
neighbours, for their credulity in matters of tradition ; and it 
is much to be regretted, that attempts of this description 
should ever afford them a handle for such sarcastic ebulli- 


^fnis song, beginning " I winna marry ony man, but 
Sandie o'er the lee," is an Anglo-Scottish production. In 
1776, Mr James Hook adapted the words to a new air com- 
posed by himself, which was published in 1777, in a collec- 
tion of songs, sung at Vauxhall Gardens by Mr Vernon, Mrs 
Weichsell, Mrs Wrighten, and Mrs Warrell. 

The Scots, however, have a pretty old song vinder the 
same title, and the words are nearly similar to those which 
Mr Hook had recourse to when he composed his air. The 
following is the Scottish melody, from one of the manuscript 
books which belonged to the late Mr Bremner, and after his 
decease, to his successor in business, Mr Brysson : 

SANDIE O'ER THE LEE. Scottish Air. 

In Gow's Complete Repository, part ii. is an air en- 
titled " He's ay kissing me ;" but it is quite different from 
the above, as well as Hook's melodj'. The first six bars of 
the second strain of Gow's tune, are in fact borrowed, note 
for note, from the air of " Saw ye Johnie comin, quo she." 
In Neil Gow & Son's Collection of Strathspeys, Reels, &c. 
dedicated to the members of the Caledonian Hunt, there is 
another tune, entitled '* Sandie o'er the Lee, or Mr Baird's 
Favourite Reel," which is the old air with considerable alter- 



The words of this ancient bottle song, beginning, " When 
I have a saxpence under my thumb," appear in Ramsay's 
Tea-Table Miscellany, and in the Orpheus Caledonius, from 
whence they were copied into the Museum. Burns was of 
opinion, that this was one of the best songs of the kind that 
ever was composed. The ancient air, to which the verses in 
the Museum are set, has been wrought into a variety of mo- 
dern tunes, under different names; such as, Armstrong's 
Farewell — Robidh donna gorrah — The Days o' Langsyne — 
Lude's Lament — The Death of the Chief, &c. 

This song, beginning " The Catrine woods were yellow 
seen," was written by Burns in 1788; and the tune was 
composed by Mr Allan Masterton, who has been repeatedly 
mentioned. Burns likewise wrote another very beautiful 
song to the same air, beginning " 'Twas even, the dewy fields 
were green." The following excerpt, from Dr Currie's Life of 
Burns, will enable the reader to trace the second song to its 
true source. 

" The whole course of the Ayr is fine; but the banks of 
that river, as it bends to the eastward above Mauchline, are 
singularly beautiful, and they were frequented, as may be 
imagined, by our poet in his solitary walks. Here the muse 
often visited him. In one of these wanderings, he met 
among the woods a celebrated beauty of the west of Scpt- 
land — a lady, of whom it is said, that the charms of her 
person correspond with the character of her mind. This 
incident gave rise, as might be expected, to a poem, of 
which an account will be found in the following letter, in 
which he inclosed it to the object of his inspiration : — 


" To Miss 

"• Mossgid, ISih Nov. 1786. 
" Madam, 
" Poets are such outre beings, so much the children of 
wayward fancy and capricious whim, that I beheve the 
world generally allows them a larger latitude in the laws 
of propriety, than the sober sons of judgment and prudence. 
I mention this as an apology for the liberties that a nameless 
stranger has taken with you in the enclosed poem, which he 
begs leave to present you with. Whether it has poetical 
merit any way worthy of the theme, I am not the proper 
judge ; but it is the best my abilities can produce ; and, what 
to a good heart will perhaps be a superior grace, it is equally 
sincere as fervent. 

" The scenery was nearly taken from real life, though I dare 
say. Madam, you do not recollect it, as I believe you scarcely 
noticed the poetic reveur as he wandered by you. I had 
roved out as chance directed, in the favourite haunts of my 
muse, on the banks of the Ayr, to view Nature in all the 
gayety of the vernal year. The evening sun was flaming over 
the distant western hills ; not a breath stirred the crimson 
opening blossom, or the verdant spreading leaf It was a 
golden moment for a poetic heart. I listened to the feather- 
ed warblers, pouring their harmony on every hand, with a 
congenial kindred regard, and frequently turned out of my 
path, lest I should disturb their little songs, or frighten 
them to another station. Surely, said I to myself, he must 
be a wretch indeed, who, regardless of your harmonious en- 
deavour to please him, can eye your elusive flights to disco- 
ver your secret recesses, and to rob you of all the property 
Nature gives youj your dearest comforts, your helpless nest- 
lings. Even the hoary haw thorn- twig that shot across the 
way, what heart, at such a time, but must have been inte- 
rested in its welfare, and wished it to be preserved from the 
rudely browsing cattle, or the withering eastern blast "i Such 


was the scene, and such the hour, when, in a corner of my 
prospect, I spied one of the fairest pieces of Nature's work- 
manship that ever crowned a poetic landscape, or met a; 
poet's eye, those visionary bards excepted who hold commerce 
with aerial beings ! Had calumny and villany taken my walk, 
they had at that moment sworn eternal peace with such an 

" What an hour of inspiration for a poet ! It would have 
raised plain, dull, historic prose, into metaphor and measure. 

" The inclosed song was the work of my return home ; 
and perhaps it but poorly answers what might have been ex- 
pected from such a scene. Robert Burns." 


'TwAS even — the dewy fields were green. 
On every blade the pearls hang ; 
The zephyr wanton'd round the bean. 
And bore its fragrant sweets alang : 
In every glen the mavis sang. 
All Nature listening, seemed the while. 
Except where green-wood echoes rang, 
Amang the braes o' Ballochmyle. 

"With careless step I onward stray'd. 
My heart rejoiced in Nature's joy. 
When musing in a lonely glade, 
A maiden fair I chanc'd to spy ; 
Her look was like the morning's eye. 
Her hair like nature's vernal smile. 
Perfection whisper'd passing by, 
" Behold the lass o' Ballochmyle." 

Fair is the mom in flowery May, 
And sweet is night in autumn mild ; 
When roving through the garden gay,. 
Or wandering in the lonely wild : 
But woman ! Nature's darling child ! 
There aU her charms she does compile ; 
Even there her other works are foil'd 
By the bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 


O had she been a country maid. 
And I the happy country swain ! 
Though shelter'd in the lowest shed 
That ever rose on Scotland's plain ;. 



Through weary winter's wind and rain. 
With joy, with rapture, I would toil. 
And nig-htly to my bosom strain 
The bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 


Then pride might climb the slippery steep. 
Where fame and honours lofty shine ; 
And thirst of gold might tempt the deep, 
Or downward seek the Indian mine ; 
Give me the cot below the pine. 
To tend the flocks or till the soil. 
And every day have joys divine. 
With the bonny lass o' Ballochmyle. 

In the manuscript book in which our poet has recounted 
this incident, and into which the letter and poem are copied, 
he complains that the lady made no reply to his effusions ; 
and this appears to have wounded his self-love. — It may be 
easily presumed, that the beautiful nymph of Ballochmyle, 
whoever she may have been, did not reject with scorn the 
adoration of ovir poet, though she received them with silent 
modesty and dignified reserve." See Dr Currie''s Life of' 
Burns, vol. i. 

The above incident gave birth to the song in the Museum, 
beginning " The Catrine woods were yellow seen," which 
is a counter part to " The Lass of Ballochmyle." Mr Allan 
Masterton, of whom notice has been taken in a former part 
of this work, composed the beautiful air to which it is adapt- 

N.B. Catrine, in Ayrshire, is the seat of Dugald Stewart, 
Esq. formerly Professor of Moral Philosophy in the Univer- 
sity of Edinburgh. Ballochmyle is the residence of Boyd 
Alexander, Esq. in the same county. 


This humorous effusion of Burns, beginning " O wha 
my baby clouts will buy .''" alludes to a well-known inci- 
dent in his history. The verses are adapted to the old tune, 
called " The East Nook of Fife," but they were originally 
intended for the air of " Wliare will our G udeman lie," which 


would have suited them better. In the Reliques, Burns 
says, " I composed this song pretty early in life, and 
sent it to a young girl, a very particular acquaintance of 
mine, who was at that time under a cloud." 


This song, beginning " In May when the daisies appear 
on the green," is another production of the worthy Dr Black- 
lock. It was originally composed by him for the purpose 
of filling up a corner in a small volume of poems, chiefly 
written by Mr Michael Bruce, a native of Kinross-shire, a 
young man of uncommon genius, and of the most flattering 
hopes, but who fell an early victim to a consumption on the 
6th July, 1767, in the twenty-first year of his age. This 
benevolent scheme was chiefly promoted by the Very Re- 
verend Dr Baird, Principal of the University of Edin- 
burgh. Its object was, to rescue from oblivion such of Mr 
Bruce's unpublished pieces as were sufliciently correct to meet 
the public eye ; and, at the same time, to procure some small 
supply for the aged mother of an ingenious youth, Mrs Ann 
Bruce, who was unable to provide for herself. It may grati- 
fy the reader to learn, that this object was fully accomplish- 
ed. Mrs Bruce has since paid the debt of nature. She 
died Sd August, 1798, in the 88th year of her age. 

In the Reliques, Burns says, " this song is Blacklock's. 
I don't know how it came by that name, but the oldest ap- 
pellation of the air was Whistle and I'll come to you, my Lad. 
It has little affinity to the tune commonly known by that 
name." This single line had very probably suggested to 
our bard the idea of composing the excellent song of " O 
whistle, and I'll come to you, my Lad," which is inserted in 
the second volume of the Museum. Vide song No 106. 


This is the sublime and pathetic ode, beginning " Thou 
ling'ring star with less'ning ray," which Burns composed in 


1789, on the anniversary of Mary Campbell's death. This 
interesting and amiable young girl was the early object of 
our poet's affections. In one of his songs, he says, in allu- 
sion to her, 

''She has my heart, she has my hand. 
By secret truth and honour's band ; 
Till the mortal stroke shall lay me low, 
I'm thine my own Highland lassie, 0." 

But the unexpected and premature death of poor Mary, 
prevented the intended matrimonial union between her and 
the bard. The reader will find several interesting particulars 
respecting this fine lyric elegy, in the notes on song 1 17, en- 
titled « The Highland lassie, O." 

The verses were transmitted by Burns, in a letter to John- 
son, with a request that they should be set to a simple and 
plaintive air, called " The Death of Captain Cook." This 
was accordingly attended to. 

Upon comparing the original manuscript of the ode, now 
lying before me in Burns' own hand-Avriting, with the printed 
copy in the Museum, I do not observe one word, or even a 
single letter, changed. He must therefore have conceived the 
whole of it perfectly in his mind, before he put pen to paper. 
It would however appear, from Dr Currie's Life of Burns, 
that he afterwards altered the title as it stands in the Mu- 
seum, and called it " An address to Mary in Heaven." 


At the accession of Alexander III. to the Scottish throne, 
in July 1249, Orkney, Shetland, and the whole Hebrides, 
or Western Islands of Scotland, were subject to the crown of 
Denmark and Norway, with the exception of Bute, Arran, 
and the two Cumbras. Haco, the Danish monarch, at length 
laid claim to these likewise, as well as the peninsula of Kin- 
tyre, on pretence, as our own historians assert, that they 
formed part of the territories which had long before been 
ceded to his predecessors by Donald Bayne, commonly called 



the usurper. Such ill-founded, and ridiculous pretensions, 
could not for a moment be listened to by the young and 
gallant Scottish monarch. Haco therefore sought to obtain 
by force what he could not impetrate by fraud and intrigue. 

Preparations were accordingly made by the Danes and 
Norwegians for the invasion of Scotland. A large and power- 
ful army was raised, and a numerous fleet, for their recep- 
tion, began to assemble at Bergen. The ship that was des- 
tined to convey Haco was entirely composed of oak, and 
ornamented with the heads and necks of dragons overlaid 
with pure gold. It contained no less than twenty-seven 
benches for the rowers, and every accommodation necessary 
for the king and his attendants.* 

About the beginning of summer 1263, the troops were em- 
barked to the number of about 25,000,-1- and the expedition 
being ready to set sail, Haco assembled a council of war, at 
which he declared, that " it was intended against Scotland in 
the western seas, to revenge the inroads which the Scots had 
made into his dominions." The signal to weigh anchor was 
then given, and this mighty and splendid armament at length 
left the Norwegian shore. :j: 

Having touched at Orkney, where he received a consider- 
able reinforcement, Haco proceeded on his expedition. Ar- 
riving off Caithness, he sent a large body of his troops ashore, 
who pillaged the country, levied heavy contributions on its 
inhabitants, and returned on board loaded with spoil. He 
q.gain set sail for the west coast of Scotland, and speedily 
subdued Bute, Arran, and the adjacent isles. Having ra- 
vaged the peninsula of Kintyre, and burned the hamlets of 
its inhabitants, Haco despatched a squadron of sixty ships up 
the Frith of Clyde to Lochlong. " When they came to the 
inlet," says the Danish historian, " they took their boats, and 
drew them up to a great lake, which is called Lochlomond. 
In the lake were many islands well inhabited, which the Nor- 
■\vegians wasted with fire." 

? Danish Account. -f- HolUnshead. J Danish Account. 


Emboldened by his various successes, Haco determined to 
carry his arms into the heart of Scotland, Having collect- 
ed his fleet, he accordingly set sail, and came to anchor off 
the coast of Ayrshire. On the 1st of October 1263, a tem- 
pest arose, which drove several of the ships ashore near the 
village of Largs, where the van of the Scottish army had al- 
ready arrived to watch the motions of the enemy. These 
vessels were immediately attacked by the Scots, and defend- 
ed with great gallantry by the Danes, who, being successive- 
ly reinforced from their fleet, maintained their ground in 
spite of every opposition. 

A calm took place, which enabled Haco to land the whole 
of his troops, and to push forward a considerable way into 
the country. At length the main body of the Scottish army 
came in sight, drawn up in order of battle. The right was 
commanded by Alexander, Lord High Stewart of Scotland ; 
the left by Patrick Dunbar, Earl of March ; and the centre 
by King Alexander. Haco instantly prepared for the fight. 
His right wing was committed to Thorgoil Gloppa, his kins- 
man ; his left to Haco of Steini, his own nephew ; whilst the 
main body, in which were his choicest warriors, was under 
the command of Haco himself, and Nicholson his gre^t chief- 
tain. Previous to the onset, both leaders employed every 
argument that ingenuity could suggest, to animate and en- 
courage their soldiers. The stake at issue was of the first 
magnitude. With the Danes, it was conquest and military 
glory. With their opponents, liberty or death. 

Now began the long and bloody conflict. The gallant 
Stewart, by a desperate charge, overthrew the left wing of the 
Danes, killed young Haco their leader, and pursued the fu- 
gitives with terrible slaughter. In the mean time, King Haco 
was straining every nerve to pierce the centre of the Scottish 
army, and victory for a while was doubtful. The Stewart 
observing the perilous situation of his sovereign, recalled his 
troops from the pursuit, and, wheeling to the left, fell upon 
the rear of Haco's centre division, who, being thus furiously 


attacked on all sides, soon gave way, and fled with trepida- 
tion, leaving the field covered with the slain. The right 
wing of the enemy, who had hitherto maintained the contest 
with great bravery, now began to waver. Dunbar, obser- 
ving this, although severely wounded, instantly charged the 
enemy with unabated courage, threw them into disorder, and 
put them to the flight. In this charge, Thorgoil Gloppa, 
who had the command of the right wing of the Danes, also 
fell. The rout now became general. The remains of the 
beaten army fled in confusion towards the coast, and were 
pursued with great slaughter by the victorious Scots, till 
night put an end to the conflict. Haco and the wreck of his 
army, having with difficulty reached their ships, weighed 
anchor, and immediately set sail. But his misfortunes were 
not yet ended. A short time thereafter, a violent tempest 
arose, which annihilated the greater part of his fleet. Many 
of his ships foundered at sea, others were dashed in pieces 
against the rocks, and the helpless inmates, who had escaped 
shipwreck, found no mercy from the relentless inhabitants, but 
were put indiscriminately to the sword, in revenge for the cruel- 
ties which the Scots had so recently suff'ered at the hands of 
their invaders. Haco, with four of his ships, at length got 
into Orkney. Here his disappointed and disgusted followers 
began to tease him for permission to return home. To some 
he gave liberty, and those who could not obtain it deserted, 
or, as his historian has it, " they took leave for themselves." 
In this forlorn state, Haco became a prey to violent grief 
and dejection of spirits, which wasted his health, and impaired 
a constitution naturally vigorous and active. Home appeared 
to have lost its relish, and he continued in this solitary abode 
to bewail his unhappy fate. Towards the close of the folloAV- 
ing autumn, he felt symptoms of approaching dissolution. 
His latter days were employed in devotional exercises, and 
in drawing up instructions for his son and successor, Magnus. 
About the beginning of December he became dangerously ill, 
and after receiving extreme unction, took an affectionate fare-- 


Avell of his attendants. On the feast of St Lucy, speech 
wholly failed him, and on the Saturday following, about 
midnight, death put an end to his earthly sorrows. His body 
was afterwards removed to Norway, and placed in the dormi- 
tory of his royal ancestors.* 

The great battle of Largs was fought on the 2d day of 
October 1263. The total loss of the Danes and Norwe- 
gians in this eventful expedition was computed at 20,000 men. 
That of the Scots 5000. The bodies of the slain were in- 
terred in deep pits, dug on purpose to receive them, and a 
rude obelisk of granite was placed as a mark of distinction 
at the grave of Haco of Steini, 

This glorious and decisive victory not only brought to 
conclusion a negotiation with Magnus IV. who, in 12G6, relin- 
quished to Alexander III. of Scotland all right to the He- 
brides and the Isle of Man, but likewise put an effectual stop 
to the future invasions of these northern powers, whose de- 
scendants, to this day, call Scotland " The grave of the 

Among the Scottish chiefs who particularly distinguished 
themselves on this memorable occasion, was Sir Alexander, 
the High Stewart, (and Hardykycht) of Scotland, who%as 
gi-eat-grandfather to the first king of the illustrious and royal 
house of Stewart. Dunbar, Earl of March, likewise behaved 
with great spirit and gallantry ; and Hugh de Douglas, an- 
cestor of the noble family of Douglas, had also the honour, 
while yet young, to contribute to the defeat of the Danes. 
This Hugh died in 1288 without issue, and was succeeded 
by his brother William de Douglas, who, by the voice of 
flattery, was called " Hardihood.'' 

Having thus given a short description of the battle of 
Largs and its consequences, it may now be requisite to say 
a few words with regard to the ballad of Hardyknute. 
That such a celebrated personage as " Lord Hardyknute" 
ever existed in Scotland, has not yet been discovered in any 

* Danish Account. 


part of her annals ; the name, therefore, must either be ficti- 
tious or corrupted. There was indeed such a person as 
" Hardicanute," who succeeded his half-brother Harold on 
the English throne, in 1039, and who, after a brvital and in- 
glorious reign of two years, died of a surfeit at the palace of 
Lambeth. But the actions of such a detestable tyrant as 
Hardicanute, could never become the subject of praise for 
any minstrel. 

It is equally improbable that so important a battle as that 
of Largs, and the actions of those gallant heroes who ob- 
tained so signal a victory, remained unnoticed and unsung by 
the Scottish bards of that aera. That such a ballad indeed 
did exist, there seems little reason to doubt ; for Mr William 
Thomson, who was one of the performers at Edinburgh 
in 1695, and. afterwards settled in London, solemnly 
assured both Mr Tytler of Woodhouselee and Dr Clarke, 
that he had heard several stanzas of it sung long; before 
its first appearance in print in 1719. Nay more, Oswald, 
who was born about the beginning of last century, has, in his 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, preserved the very tune. It 
is here annexed. -f ■-' 




Jr ^- 





But the history of the modern ballad of Hardyknute is 
better known ; it was chiefly composed from some imperfect 
fragments of the old ballad by Elizabeth Halket, second 
daughter of Sir Charles Halket of Pitferran, Bart. This 
lady was baptised 15th April, 1677; on the 13th June, 
1696, she married Sir Henry Wardlaw of Pitreavie, in the 
county of Fife, by whom she had a family. She died in 
1727, and was interred in the family vault within the church 
of Dunfermline. 


Lady Wardlaw's improved ballad was long handed about 
in manuscript among the domestic circle of her friends and 
acquaintance for their amusement. It at length happened to 
attract\the notice of the late Lord President Forbes and Sir 
Gilbert Elliot, afterwards Lord Justice Clerk, both good 
poets, and these gentlemen, conceiving the whole poem to be 
a genuine production of antiquity, were at the expense of 
publishing it in a small folio tract of 12 pages, in the year 
1719. The secret was at length divulged, and Lady Ward- 
law favoured Allan Ramsay with a new and enlarged copy, 
which was printed in his Evergreen, at Edinburgh, in 1 724. 

In 1781, Mr John Pinkerton gave to the world a volume 
of " Scottish Tragic Ballads,'" in which a second part of the 
fragment of Hardyknute first saw the light. It was now 
said to be " given in its original perfection," and, with equal 
truth and modesty, pronounced to be " the most noble pro- 
duction in this style that ever appeared in the world." The 
editor professed himself to be " indebted, for the most of the 
stanzas now recovered, to the memory of a lady in Lanark- 
shire," and asserted, that the common people of that province 
could " repeat scraps of both parts." " A few other monu- 
ments of a"ncient poetry, (he adds) are now first published 
from tradition." These are, The Laird of Woodhouslee, 
Lord Livingston, Binnorie, The Death of Monteith, and 
/ wish / were where Helen lyes — of the forgery of which 
pieces, as well as of the second part of Hardyknute, Pinker- 
ton, in a subsequent publication, but not till he had been 
directly accused by a letter in the Gentleman''s Magazine, 
for November 1784, confessed himself guilty. " This man, 
(says Ritson) is what the courtesy of the age calls a gentle- 
man, and yet, to borrow his own words, if he had used the 
same freedom in a private business, which he has in poetry, 
he would have been set on the pillory ; and, in fact, to call 
such an infamous impostor by his very worst, but true title, 
were but justice to society." — Historical Essay on Scottish 
Song., p. 76. 


Ritson, however, goes too far in asserting, that even in 
the Jirst part of Hardyknute, " there is not a single line 
which is not stolen from some old ballad, that has the most 
distant appearance of having existed before.*' There are not 
only lines, but whole stanzas too, of undoubted antiquity, 
and which are not to be found in the whole multifarious bal- 
lads, English or Scottish, ancient or modern, that have yet 
come from the press. The anachronisms which occur 
in the original printed ballad, such as " Hardy knute"" 
for " Hardy knycht -j" Queen " Elenor ' for " Marga- 
ret," her daughter, &c. tend to show that the ancient bal- 
lad had been corrupted in passing by oral communication 
from ancient to modern times. Lady Wardlaw was too ele- 
gant and accomplished a writer to have committed such blun- 
ders, had she been the author of the whole of this historical 
fragment, although several of the stanzas are undoubtedly 


This pretty air appears in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, vol. xii. under the title of " My Eppie." Burns 
supplied the words for the Museum. 


The battle of Dunblane, or Sheriff-Muir, between the 
Earl of Mar for the Chevaher, and the Duke of Argyle for 
Government, was fought on the 13th November, 1715. Both 
sides claimed the victory. 

Several songs were composed to commemorate this battle, 
such as " Up and warn a', Willie," — " There^s some say 
that we wan, some say that they wan." There was another 
which was entitled " A Dialogue between WiU Lickladle 
and Tom Cleancogue, Twa Shepherds, wha were feeding 
their flocks on the Ochil-Hills on the day the battle of 
Sherriff-Muir was fought. The chorus to be sung after 
every verse to the tune of the Cameron's March." This 


dialogue, however, was written by the late Mr Barclay, the 
Berean minister in Edinburgh, many years after the event to 
which it alludes. It is annexed. 

W. Pray came you here the fight to shun. 
Or keep the sheep wi' me, man ? 
Or was ye at the SherifF-moor, 
And did the battle see, man ? 
Pray tell whilk of the parties won ; 
For weel I wat I saw them run. 
Both south and north, when they begun 
To pell and mell, and kill and fell. 
With muskets snell, and pistols knell. 
And some to hell 

Did flee, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 

T. But, my dear Will, I kenna still, 
Whillf o' the two did lose, man; 
For, well I wat, they had good skill 
To set upo' their foes, man : 
The red-coats they are train'd, you see— • 
The clans always disdain to flee — 
Wha then should gain the victory ? 
But the Highland race, all in a brace. 
With a swift pace, to the Whigs' disgrace. 
Did put to cliace 

Their foes, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 

W. -Now how deil, Tam, can this be true } 

I saw the chace gae north, man ; 
T. But, weel I wat, they did pursue 
Them even unto the Forth, man. 
Frae Dunblane they ran, in my own sight. 
And got o'er the bridge with all their might. 
And those at Stirling took their flight ; 
Gif only ye had been wi' me. 
You'd seen them flee, of each degree. 
For fear to die 

Wi' sloth, man. 

Fal, la, la, &c. 


W. IMy sister Kate came o'er the hiU 
Wi' crowdie unto me, man ; 
She swore she saw them running still 
Frae Perth unto Dundee, man : 


The left wing general hadna slcill, 
The Angus lads had nae good will, 
That day their neighbour's blood to spill ; 
For fear by foes that they should lose 
Their cogues o' brose, all crying woes^ 
Yonder them goes. 

D'ye see, man; 
Chorus. — Fal, la, la, &c. 

T. I see but few like gentlemen 

Amang yon frighted crew, man ; 

I fear my Lord Panmure be slain. 

Or that he's ta'en just now, man : 

For tho' his officers obey. 

His cowardly commons run away. 

For fear the red-coats them should slay ; 

The sodgers' haill make their hearts fail ; 

See how they skaU, and turn the tail. 

And rin to flail 

And plow, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 

W. But now brave Angus comes again 
Into the second fight, man ; 
They swear they'll either die or gain. 
No foes shall them affright, man ; 
Argyle's best forces they'll withstand. 
And boldly fight them sword in hand. 
Give them a general to command, 
A man of might, that will but fight, 
.And take delight to lead them right. 
And ne'er desire 

The flight, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 

But Flandrekins they have no skill 
To lead a Scottish force, man; 
Their motions do our courage spill. 
And put us to a loss, man. 
You'll hear of us far better news. 
When we attack in Highland trews. 
And hash and slash, and smash and bruise. 
Till the field, tho' braid, be all o'erspread. 
But coat or plaid, Avi' corpse that's dead. 
In their cold bed. 

That's moss, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 



Yet last ouk, for a' my keeping, 
(Wha can speak it without greeting ? 
A villain cam when I was sleeping, 
Sta' my ewie, horn and a. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


I sought her upo' the morn ; 
And down aneath a buss o' thorn, 
I got my ewie's crookit horn. 
But my ewie was awa. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


! gin I had the loun that did it. 
Sworn I have as well as said it. 
Though a' the warld should forbid it, 

I wad gie his neck a thra'. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


1 never met wi' sic a turn 
As this, sin ever I was born. 
My ewie wi' the crookit horn. 

Silly ewie, stown awa. 

The ewie ivi', &c. 


! had she deid o' crook or cauld. 
As ewies do when they are auld. 
It wadna been, by mony fauld, ' 

Sae sair a heart to nane o's a'. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


For a' the claith that we hae worn, 
Frae her and her's sae aften shorn. 
The loss o' her we cou'd hae born. 

Had fair strae-death taen her awa. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


But thus, poor thing, to lose her life 
Aneath a bluidy villain's knife, 
I'm really fley't thou't our gudewife 
Will never win aboon't ava. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


! a' ye bards benorth Kinghorn, 
Call your muses up and mourn. 
Our ewie wi' the crookit horn, 
Stown frae's, an' fell't an a'. 
The ewie un , SiC. 


The reverend author, in a letter to Burns, dated 14th 
November 1787, alluding, with great modesty, to his own poet- 
ical compositions, says, " While I was young, I dabbled a good 
deal in these things ; but, on getting the black gown, I gave 
it pretty much over till my daughters grew up, who, being 
all tolerably good singers, plagued me for words to some of 
their favourite tunes, and so extorted those effusions, which 
have made a public appearance beyond my expectations, and 
contrary to my intentions. At the same time, I hope that there 
is nothing to be found in them uncharacteristic or unbecoming 
the cloth, which I would always wish to see respected." 



This song, beginning " I gaed a waefu' gate yestreen," 
was written, in 1789, for the Museum. The heroine was Miss 
J * * * * of Lochmaben. This lady, now Mrs R * * * * *^ 
after residing sometime in Liverpool, is settled with her hus- 
band in New- York. The air to which the verses are adapted 
in the Museum, was composed by the late Robert Riddel of 
Glenriddel, Esq. It is very pretty, no doubt, but its com- 
pass is beyond the reach of many singers. A slight altera- 
tion of the first and two concluding bars of the second 
strain would both remedy this defect and improve the melody. 



This song, beginning " The Thames flows proudly to the 
sea,"" is another production of Burns for the Museum. The 
tune in the Museum is erroneously called " Robie donna 
gorrach," in place of a new air by R. Riddel of Glenriddel, 
Esq. The song was intended to depict the feelings of an in- 
habitant of Nithsdale, then residing in l^ondon, reflecting 
upon the innocent scenes of his youthful days on the banks 
of the river Nith, 



This fine comic song, beginning " My heart is a-breaking,. 


T. Twa gen'rals frae the field did run, 
Lords Huntley and Seaforth, man ; 
They cry'd and run, grim death to shun, 
Those heroes o' the north, man ;* 
They're fitter far for book or pen. 
Than under Mars to lead on men ; 
Ere they came there they might weel ken. 
That female hands could ne'er gain lands, 
'Tis Highland brands that countermands 
Argathlean bands 

Frae Forth, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 


W. The Camerons scour'd as they were mad. 
Lifting their neighbours' cows, man, 
M'Kenzie and the Stewart fled. 
Without phil'beg or trews, man ; 
Had they behaved like Donald's core. 
And kill'd all those came them before. 
Their king had gone to France no more ; 
Then each Whig saint wad soon repent. 
And strait recant his covenant. 
And rent 

It at the news, man. 
Fal, la, la, &c. 


T. M'Gregors they far off did stand, 
Badenoch and Athol too, man ; 
I hear they wanted the command. 
For I believe them true, man. 
Perth, Fife, and Angus, wi' their horse. 
Stood motionless, and some did worse. 
For, tho' the red coats went them cross, 
They did conspire for to admire 
Clans run and fire, left wings retire. 
While rights intire 

Pursue, man. 

Fal, la, la, &c. 


W. But Scotland has not much to say. 
For such a fight as this is. 
Where baith did fight and run away. 
The devil take the miss is. 

" The insurgents reckoned, likewise, that some noblemen and chiefs from the 
north did not act so honest a part ; or at least did not shew so much courage as 
the zeal they expressed or the cause required — Campbell's Life of J. D. of Argyle, 
page 305. 



That ev'ry officer was not slain 
That run that day and was not ta'en. 
Either flying from or to Dunblane, 
When Whig and Tory, in their fury. 
Strove for glory, to our sorrow 
The sad story 

Hush is. 

Fal, la, la, &c. 

This song did not quite please Burns. He thought the 
author had treated the behaviour of the clans, as well as some 
of their chieftains, rather too severely. Johnson, however, 
who was a member of Mr Barclay's congregation, seemed 
to be of opinion, that the song would do well enough, and 
as he was fond of the tune, which is called " The Cam- 
erons' March," and sometimes, " The Cameronians' Rant, 
or Reel,'" he wished to insert it in the Museum. But Burns 
promised to furnish him with a similar song for his work, 
which perhaps might please him still better. He accordingly 
produced the parody, beginning " O cam ye here the fight 
to shun," which is inserted in the Museum. 

With respect to this parody, as well as its prototype, Cro- 
mek, the editor of Burns' Reliques, makes the following re- 
marks. Speaking of the original, he says, " The mode of 
narration is well chosen, but the poem has little other merit, 
except as being a circumstantial, and a sort of gazette account 
of the affair."" Doctors differ ; — the original contains many 
flashes of genuine wit and keen sarcastic humour, and has a 
great deal oi truth in the narrative to recommend it. 

Alluding to Burns' parody of the Battle of Sherriffmuir, 
Mr Cromek observes, " So fine a subject could not escape 
the muse which immortalized the fight of Bannockburn, 
and in the accompanying stanzas (the reader will find 
them in the Museum) we have an additional proof of the ar- 
dent and inexhaustible mind of Burns, which, Avhen roused in 
the cause of patriotism, could invest the rudest materials 
Avith the riches of its own genius Most imitations are 
only foils to the original ; but here, the model is like a 
tree in the bare poverty of winter, and the copy is the same 


tree, warmed with the life, and clothed with the genuine ver- 
dure, of spring. This is one, among innumerable instances, in 
which he has displayed the versatility of his powers in new- 
modelling the ancient ballads of his country — 

" Nullum quod tetigit non ornavit." 

This panegyric is all very fine and well ; but the reader 
will not, it is believed, be displeased that Mr Barclay's origi- 
nal verses are preserved, by which he has it in his power to 
form a judgment of the respective merits of the two ballads 

Neither the music nor words of this song are indigenous 
to Scotland. It is merely a modern travestie of part of a 
pseudo Scottish song, entitled " Jenny's Lamentation," consist- 
ing of five eight-line stanzas, which is inserted in Roberts' 
Calliope, or English Harmony, vol. i. — London, in ] 739. 


The words of this song, beginning " The gloomy night is 
gathering fast," were written by Burns in 1786, and set to 
music by his friend Mr Allan Masterton. " I composed this 
song, (says Burns) as I convoyed my chest so far on the road 
to Greenock, where I was to embark in a few days for Ja- 
maica. I meant it as my farewell dirge to my native land." 

In a letter to Dr Moore, dated 2d August 1788, in- 
serted in Dr Currie's Life of Burns, vol. i. our poet again 
alludes to this song. He says, " As soon as I was master of 
nine guineas, the price of wafting me to the torrid zone, I 
took a steerage-passage in the first ship that Avas to sail from 
the Clyde ; for 

• Hungry ruin had me in the wind.' 

" I had been for some days skulking from covert to co- 
vert, under all the terrors of a jail; as some ill-advised people 
had uncoupled the merciless pack of the law at my heels. I 
had taken the last farewell of my few friends ; my chest was 


on the road to Greenock ; I had composed the last song I 
should ever measure in Caledonia, " The gloomy Night is 
gathering fast," when a letter from Dr Blacklock to a friend 
of mine overthrew all my schemes, by opening new prospects 
to my poetic ambition. The doctor belonged to a set of 
critics for whose applause I had not dared to hope. His 
opinion, that I 'vvould meet with encouragement in Edinburgh 
for a second edition, fired me so much, that away I posted for 
that city, without a single acquaintance, or a single letter of 
introduction. The baneful star, that had so long shed its 
blasting influence in my zenith, for once made a revolution to 
the nadir ; and a kind Providence placed me under the pa- 
tronage of one of the noblest of men, the Earl of Glericairn. 
Oublie moi, grand dieu, si Jamais Je I'oublie I I need relate 
no farther. At Edinburgh, I was in a new world; I mingled 
among many classes of men, but all of them new to me, and 
I was all attention to catch the characters and the manners 
living as they rise." 


This excellent song, beginning " When first I cam to be 
a man,*" is another production of the Reverend Mr John 
Skinner, of whom mention has been made in a former part 
of this work. — See Notes on song 201. The words are 
adapted to a fine old Highland strathspey. 

The subject of this ballad is related by W. Gordon, in 
his " History of the illustrious House of Gordon," 1726, vol. 
ii. p. 135, in the following words :; — 

" Anno, 1630, there happened a melancholy accident to 
the family of Huntly thus. — First of January there fell out 
a discord betwixt (Sir James Crichton) the laird of Fren- 
draught and some of his friends, and Wilham Gordon of 
Rothemay and some of his, in which WilHam Gordon was 
killed, a brave and gallant gentleman. On the Other side was 



slain George Gordon, brother of Sir James Gordon of Les- 
more, and divers others were wounded on both sides. The 
Marquis ofHuntly, and some other well-disposed friends, 
made up this quarrel ; and Frendraught was appointed to 
pay fifty thousand merks Scots, in compensation of the 
slaughter ; which, as is said, was truly paid. 

« Upon the 27th of September this year (1630) Fren- 
draught, having in his company Robert Crichton of Condlaw, 
and James Lesly, son to the laird of Pitcaple, Crichton shot 
Lesly through the arm, who was carried to his father's house, 
and Frendraught put Crichton out of his company. Imme- 
diately thereafter he went to visit the Earl of Murray, and 
on his return came to the Bog of Gight, now Castle Gordon, 
to visit the Marquis of Huntly ; of which Pitcaple getting 
notice, convenes about thirty horsemen fully armed and 
with them marches to intercept Frendraught, and to be re- 
venged of him for the hurt his son had got. He came to the 
Marquis''s house, October 7. Upon which the Marquis 
wisely desired Frendraught to keep company with his lady, 
and he would discourse Pitcaple, who complained to him 
grievously of the harm he had done his son, and vowed he 
would be revenged of him ere he returned home. The Mar- 
quis did all he could to excuse Frendraught, and satisfy Pit- 
caple, but to no purpose ; and so he went away in a chaff, 
still vowing revenge. 

" The Marquis communicated all that had passed to Fren- 
draught, and kept him in his house a day or two ; and even 
then would not let him go home alone, but sent his son, John 
Gordon, viscount of Melgum and Aboyne, with some others, 
as a safeguard to him, until he should be at home (among 
whom was John Gordon of Rothemay, son to him lately 
slain) lest Pitcaple should lye in ambush for him. 

" They conveyed him safely home, and after dinner Aboyne 
pressed earnestly to return ; and as earnestly did Fren- 
draught press him to stay, and would by no means part with 
him that night. He at last condescended to stay, though 


unwillingly. They were well entertained, supped merrily, 
and went to bed joyful. The Viscount was laid in a room 
in the old tower of the hall, standing upon a vault, where 
there was a round hole under his bed. Robert Gordon and 
English Will, two of his servants, were laid beside him. The 
laird of Rothemay, and some servants by him, in an upper 
room above Aboyne. And, above that, in another room, 
George Chalmers of Noth, and another of the Viscounts 
servants ; all of them lodged in that old tower, and all of 
them in rooms, one above the other. All of them being at 
rest, about midnight the tower takes fire, in so sudden and 
fvirious a manner, that this noble lord, the laird of Rothemay, 
English Will, Colin Ivat, and other two, being six in num- 
ber, were cruelly burnt to death, without help or relief being 
offered to be made ; the laird and lady looking on, without 
so much as endeavouring to deliver them from the fury of 
those merciless flames, as was reported. 

" Robert Gordon, who was in Aboyne's chamber, escaped, 
as ('tis said) Aboyne might have done if he had not rushed 
up stairs to awake Rothemay ; and while he was about that, 
the wooden passage and the lofting of the room took fire, so 
that none of them could get down stairs. They went to the 
window that looked into the court, and cried many times 
help, for God's sake, the laird and lady looking on, but all 
to no purpose. And finally, seeing there was no help to be 
made, they recommended themselves to God, clasped in one 
another's embraces. 

"And thus perished in those merciless flames, the noble 
Lord John Gordon, viscount of Melgum and Aboyne, and 
John Gordon of Rothemay, a very brave youth. This vis- 
count was a very complete gentleman, both in body and mind, 
and much lamented by the whole country, but especially by 
his father, mother, and lady, who lived a melancholy retired 
life all her time thereafter. And this was all the reward the 
Marquis of Huntly got for his good will to Frendraught, 


says my author, Spalding, who hved not far from the place, 
and had the account from eye witnesses Z" 

This ungrateful villain, and inhuman murderer, was nevei*- 
theless raised to the peerage by the title of James Crichton, 
Viscount Frendraught, in 1642. His wife, who might have 
been a fit companion for such a wretch a* Lady Macbeth, 
was Elizabeth Gordon, daughter of John, Earl of Suther- 
land, and near cousin to the Marquis of Huntly. Gordon 
adds, " The family of Frendraught was then very opulent. 
They had a great land-estate and much money ; and after 
that it soon went to ruin, and was sometime ago extinct."" No 

The ballad, as printed in the Museum and other collec- 
tions, is not supposed to be so old as the date of the event. 
The Rev. Mr Boyd, translator of Dante, remembered a few 
stanzas of an older ballad, composed, it is said, at the time, 
which J. C. Walker, Esq. obligingly communicated to Mr 
Ritson. They are here annexed. 

The reek it rose, and the flame it flew. 
And oh ! the fire augmented high. 
Until it came to Lord John's chamber window. 
And to the bed whei'e Lord John did lye. 

O, help me, help me. Lady Frennet ! 
I never ettled harm to thee. 
And if my father slew thy Lord, 
Forget the deed and rescue me ! 

He looked east, he looked west. 
To see if any help was nigh. 
At length his little page he saw. 
Who to his lord aloud did cry, 

Loup down, loujj down, my master dear. 
What tho' the window's dreigh and hie, 
I'U catch you in my arms twa. 
And never a foot from you I'll flee. 
How can I loup, ye little page ? 
How can I leave this window hie ? 
Do you not see the blazing low. 
And my twa legs burnt to my knee ? 

Ritson adds, " There are some intermediate particulars, 
Mr Boyd says, respecting the lady's lodging her victims in % 


turret, or flanker, which did not communicate with the castle. < 
This I have only from tradition, as I never heard any other 
stanzas besides the foregoing." The author of the above 
five stanzas, either through ignorance or design, has commit- 
ted an egregious mistake, in representing the Marquis of 
Huntly, Lord John's father, as the murderer of Lady Fren- 
nefs husband. Sir James Crichton. la place of dying that 
way, or even by the gallows, which both he and his wicked 
strumpet so richly deserved, we find him twelve years there- 
after elevated to the peerage by King Charles I. ! 

Neither is the author of the more modern ballad correct, in 
supposing Lord John and John Gordon of Rothemay to 
have been brothers, as in the following passage, 

'^^ Full weel ye ken your husband dear 
Was by our father slain." 

The actual cause of Sir John and Lady Crichton of Fren- 
nefs provocation appears to have been, the 50,000 merks 
Scots, about L.2777 : 15 : 6 Sterling, which the Marquis of 
Huntly had awarded Sir John to pay, in compensation for 
the slaughter of old Gordon of Rothiemay. Poetical fictions 
must always yield to historical evidence. 

Thiib a'u", with a shght alteration, was pubhshed in Oswald's 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. vii. page 8, under the 
title of " Jocky was the blythe^t Lad in a' our Town." The 
song was marked by Johnson with the letter Z, to denote 
that it was an old one with additions. But the whole of it, 
excepting three or four lines, is the production of Burns. 

This song, beginning " Whare are you gaun my bonnie 
lass," is not to be found in any collection prior to the Mu- 
seum. In Burns Rehques, he says, " I picked up this old 
song and tune from a country girl in Nithsdale — I never met 
with it elsewhere in Scotland." 



This fine song, beginning " Come gie's a sang, Montgom- 
ery cried," is another production of the Reverend Mr John 
Skinner ; the verses are adapted to the charming strathspey, 
called The Reel of Tulhchgorum. Burns, in his Reliques, 
gives us the following account of the song of Tullochgorum : 
" This First of Songs is the master-piece of my old friend 
Skinnee. He was, I think, passing the day at the town of 
CuUen ; I think it was, (he should have said Ellon) in a 
friend's house, whose name was Montgomery. Mi s Mont- 
gomery observing, en passant, that the beautiful reel of Tul- 
lochgorum wanted words ; she begged them of Mr Skinner, 
who gratified her wishes, and the wishes of every lover of 
Scottish song, in this most excellent ballad. These particu- 
lars I had from the author's own son. Bishop Skinner, at 
Aberdeen. Eeliques. The following is an extract of a let- 
ter from Mr^ Burns to the author of Tullochgorum.— 
" Reverend and venerable Sii",— Accept, in plain dull prose, 
my most sincere thanks for the best poetical compliment I 
ever received. (Burns here alludes to the poetical epistle he 
had received from Mr Skinner.) I assure you, Sir, as a poet, 
you have conjured up an airy demon of vanity in my fancy, 
which the best abilities in your other capacity will be ill able 
to lay. I regret, and while I live shall regret, that, when I 
was north, I had not the pleasure of paying a younger bro- 
ther's dutiful respect to the author of the best Scotch song 
ever Scotland saw — ' Tullochgor urn's my delight !' The 
world may think slightingly of the craft of song-making if 
they please ; but, as Job says, * O ! that mine adversary had 
written a book !' Let them try." 

Mr Cromek adds the following note respecting the words 
" Whig-mig-morum," which Mr Skinner introduces in the 
first stanza. " Whig-mig-morum occurs in Habbie Simpson's 
Epitaph. — 

" Sae weiU's he keipit his decorum, 

" And all the stotis of Quhip Meg morum/' 



'^'Sioiis means notes of music — Quhip Meg morum, the name 

of an old air ; therefore the sense is, Notes of Whip-mig- 

morum."" — See Cromek's Select Scottish Songs. London, 


The word Siotis, however, evidently implies certain steps 

used in the dance called " Quhip-meg-morum," long since 

laid aside. But the word Quhip-meg-morura, in Francis 

Semple's Epitaph on Habbie Simpson, does not appear to 

have any connection with Whig-mig-morum, as used in Mr 

Skinner's ballad, which clearly signifies political wrangling 

or controversy, and was probably coined by himself, merely 

for rhyme's sake, from the term WTiig used in a jocular sense. 

Let Whig and Tory all agree 
To drop their Whig-mig-morum. 

I have never been able to discover who framed the reel of 
Tullochgorum ; but the composer has evidently taken the 
subject of it from the old Scottish song tune, called " Jockie's 
fow and Jenny fain," which may be seen loaded with varia- 
tions in Craig's Select Tunes, printed in 1730, and the words 
in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany. The following is a 
genuine copy of the old air, and the first stanza of the ballad. 


^4i -J- =~3~-*- 


Jockie's fow and Jenny's fain ; Jenny was nae ill to gain 

.ft » . ... 





I — ^ — ^ — 



She was couthy, he was kind, And thus the wooer tell'd his mind 

.ft m. ft I , ft ft 




Jenny, I'll nae mair be nice, Gie me love at o-ny price; I 


_ — ft 



winna, prig for red or ^vhy t. Love alane can gie delight. 
Ramsay wisely suppressed the rest of this old ditty, and 


added three verses of his own, which were less objectionable, 
and printed with the letter Q, as an old song with additions. 

As the song of « Tullochgorum'' in the Museum contabs 
several variations from the Rev, Author's own copy, it is 
annexed, witH his last corrections. 


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 all agree, 

Whig and Tory, Whig and Tory, 
Whig and Tory aU agree. 

To drop their Whig-mig-morum ; 
Let Whig and Tory all agree 
To spend the night in mirth and glee. 
And cheerful sing alang wi' me 

The Reel o' Tullochgorum. 

O' TuUochgorum's my delight. 
It gars us a' in ane unite. 
And ony sumph that keeps a spite, 
In conscience I abhor him : 
For blythe and cheerie we'll be a', 

BIythe and cheerie, blythe and cheerie, 
Blythe and cheerie we'll be a'. 
And make a happy quorum; 
For blythe 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' them ; 
They're dowf and dowie 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' Tullochgorum, 


Let wardly worms their minds oppress 
Wi' fears o' want and double cess. 


And sullen sots themsells distress 

Wi' keeping up decorum : 
Shall we sae sour and sulky sit. 

Sour and sulky, sour and sulky ? 
Sour and sulky shall we sit. 

Like old PhDosophorum ! 
Shall we sae sour and sulky sit, 
Wi' neither sense, nor mirth, nor wit. 
Nor ever try to shake a fit 

To th' Reel o' Tullochgorum ? 


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 plenty. 
Peace and plenty be his lot. 

And dainties a great store o' them ; 
May peace and plenty be his lot, 
Unstain'd by any vicious spot. 
And may he never want a groat 

That's fond o' Tullochgorum ! 


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 me 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' Tullochgorum. 



This humorous song, beginning " Tho' women's minds, 
like winter winds," was wholly written by Burns, in 1789, 
for the Museum, except the two first lines of the chorus, 
which are taken from the old song to the same tune. 

In 1794, Burns wrote the following capital verses to the 
same air, which were handed about in manuscript a consider- 
able time before they appeared in print. They unfortunate- 

CCXC— FOR a' that, AN' a' THAT. 285 

ly came out at a period when political disputes ran very high, 
and his enemies did not fail to interpret every sentence of 
them to his prejudice. That he was the zealous friend of 
rational and constitutional freedom, will not be denied ; but 
that he entertained principles hostile to the safety of the 
state, no honest man that knew him will ever venture to 
maintain. In fact, what happened to Burns has happened to 
most men of genius. During times of public commotion, 
there are always to be found vile and dastardly scoundrels, 
who, to render themselves favourites with those in power, 
and push their own selfish views of interest and ambition, 
are ever ready to calumniate the characters, and misrepresent 
the motives and actions of their neighbours, however good, 
innocent, or meritorious. 

Burns introduced the verses to Mr Thomson in January 
1795, with this note : " A great critic (Aikin) on songs says, 
that love and wine are the exclusive themes for sono-.writ- 
ing. The following is on neither subject, and consequently 
is no song ; but will be allowed, I think, to be two or three 
pretty good prose thoughts inverted into rhyme :" 

O WHA, for honest poverty. 
Wad hang his head an' a' that ? 
The coward-slave^ we pass him by — 
We dare be poor for a' that ! 
For a' that, an' a' that. 
Our toils obscure, an' a' that; 
The rank is but the guinea's stamp. 
The man's the gowd for a' that. 

What tho' on hamely fare we dine. 
Wear hoddin gray an' a' that ; 
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine, 
A man's a man for a' that: 
For a' that, an' a' that. 
Their tinsel shaw, an' a' that ; 
The honest man, tho' e'er sae poor. 
Is king o' men for a' that. 

Ye see yon birkie ca'd a lord, 
Wha struts and stares, an' a' that. 

S86 ccxc— FOR a' that, an' a' that 

Tho' hundreds worship at his word. 

He's but a coof for a' that : 

For a' that, an' a that. 

His ribband, star, an' a' that, 

The man of independent mind. 

He looks and laughs at a' that. 


A king can mak a belted knight, 

A marquis, duke, an' a' that ; 

But an honest man's aboon his might, 

Guid faith he manna' fa' that 1 

For a' that, an' a' that. 

Their dignities, an' a' that. 

The pith o' sense, and pride o' worth. 

Are higher ranks than a' that. 

Then let us pray, that come it may. 

As come it will for a' that. 

That sense and worth, o'er a' the earth, 

May bear the gree, an' a' that. 

For a' that, an' a' that. 

It's coming yet for a' that. 

That man to man, the warld o'er. 

Shall brothers be for a' that. 


This song was written by Burns, and set to music by 
Allan Masterton, in 1789. The " Willie," who brew'd a 
peck o"* maut, was Mr William Nicol of the High School, 
Edinburgh; and Rob and Allan, were our poet and his 
friend Masterton. The occasion of it was this ; — Mr Nicol 
had purchased the farm of Laggan, in Nithsdale, by the 
advice of Burns, and during the autumn vacation, 1789, he 
went to look after his new purchase. Mr Masterton, who 
who was at that time on a visit to Dalswinton, and our poet, 
went to pay Nicol a visit, and warm his new house. " We 
had such a joyous meeting," says Burns, " that Mr Master- 
ton and 1 agreed, each in our own way, that we should cele- 
brate the business.'"* Accordingly, Burns produced the 
words, and Masterton the music. — These three honest fel- 

" See Reli^uet. 

cexci.- — o, WILLIE bkew'b a peck o"* maut. 287 

lows, and men too of uncommon talents, are all now num- 
bered with the dead. 

The chorus of this song is old. The rest of it, beginning 
<* Whare hae ye been sae braw, lad," was written, in 1789, 
by Burns, on purpose for the Museum. This tune is men- 
tioned in the Scotch Presbyterian Eloquence, written in 
1692 ; as the writer tells us, that " the death of Lawderdale 
and Sir George Mackenzie happened last year," viz. 1691. 


This excellent song, beginning " O were I able to re- 
hearse," is another production of the'Reverend Mr John Skin- 
ner. The verses are adapted to a fine lively Highland reel, 
of considerable antiquity, which received its name from a 
*' Ewie" of a very different breed ; namely, the whisky-still, 
with its crooked, or rather spiral, apparatus. 


With tlie Author's last Corrections. 
Were I but able to rehearse 
My ewie's praise in proper verse, 
I'd sound it forth as loud and fierce. 

As ever piper's drone could blaw : 


The ewie lui the crookit horn, 
Wha had kent her 7night hae sworn. 
Sic a ewe was never born 
Hereabout, nor far awa. 

* Killicrankie is a noted pass in the Highlands of Athol, near the junction of 
the Tummel river with that of the Garry. It is formed by the lofty mountains 
impending over the river Garry, which rushes below in a dark, deep, and rocky 
channel, overhung with trees that grow out of the clefts of the rock. The river 
is in most places invisible to the traveller, who only hears its deafening roar ; 
and where it is seen, the water appears pouring over a precipice, forming a scene 
of awful magnificence. Near the north-end of this pass was fought the battle of 
Killicrankie, on 27th July, 1689, in which the Dutch and English forces of King 
William, under the command of General Mackay, were almost instantaneously de- 
feated by the Highland clans, commanded by James Graham of Claverhouse, 
(Viscount Dundee) who adhered to King James ; but Claverhouse received his 
death-wound in this battle, whicli event blasted the hopes of the royal family of 


I never needed tar nor keil. 
To mark her upo' hip or heel. 
Her crookit horn did as weel 

To ken her by amo* them a'. 
The erne wi , &c. 

She never threatened scab nor rot. 
But keepit ay her ain jog-trot, 
Baith to the fauld and to the cot. 

Was never sweirt to lead nor ca'. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


Cauld nor hunger never dang her. 
Wind nor wet could never wrang her ; 
Anes she lay an ouk and langer, 

Furth aneath a wreath o' snaw. 
The ewie wi, &c. 


Whan ither ewies lap the dyke. 
And ate t'le kail for a' the tyke. 
My ewie never play'd the like. 
But tyc'd about the barn wa'. 
The eioie wi', &c. 


A better, or a thriftier beast, 

Nae honest man could weel hae wist. 

For, silly thing, she never mist 

To hae, ilk year, a lamb or twa. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


The first she had I gae to Jock, 
To be to him a kmd o' stock. 
And now the laddie has a flock 
O' mair nor thirty head ava. 
The ewie wi', &c. 


I lookit aye at even for her. 
Lest mishanter shou'd come o'er her. 
Or the fowmart might devour her. 
Gin the beastie bade awa. 
The ewie wi', &c. 

My ewie wi' the crookit horn, 
Weel deserv'd baith gerse and com. 
Sic a ewe was never bom 
Hereabout, or far awa. 
The ewie wi', &c. 

- i 


dear tittie," is one among many of the happy effusions of 
Burns' fertile muse. In the Museum, the verses are adapted 
to a very ancient air, of which the title " Tarn Glen" is all 
that remains of the old song. The tune and words were 
both transmitted by Burns to Johnson, expjessly for his 
Museum. The verses, however, are more generally sung to 
the air called " The Mucking o' Geordie's Byre,"" an excellent 
set of which will be found in vol. i. p. 97, of that work. 


This comic old ballad, beginning " There lived a wife in 
our gate end," was rescued from the stalls, and placed in a 
regular Collection of Songs and Ballads, by David Herd, 
in 1776. It contains a lively and humorous description 
of the rough, but, as it would seem, very efficacious means em- 
ployed by an humble villager to reclaim his unhappy spouse 
from the pernicious habits of intoxication ; an advice to hus- 
bands who may happen to be simiiai-ly situated ; and concludes 
with an appropriate epitaph. It has long been a favourite at 
every country fireside, and may be read Avith pleasure in the 
closet. Nevertheless, the refined manners of modern life will 
be a bar, perhaps, to its general reception in the fashionable 
circle of a drawing-room. The tune to which it is adapted, 
is known by the name of " The Banting Highlandman." 


This congratulatory song, on the restoration of the for- 
feited estates in Scotland to their original proprietors, in 
1784, is the production of the late Rev. Mr William Ca- 
meron, minister of Kirknewton, near Edinburgh. The verses, 
beginning " As o er the Highland hills I hied," are adapted 
to the fine old an*, called " The Haughs o' Cromdale." 

In the index to the third volume of the Museum, this 
song is said to have been composed on the imprisonment of 


the unfortunate Mary Queen of Scots, in the castle of Loch- 
leven, in 1567. The Earl of Argyle was on the queen's 
party at the battle of Langside, in 1568, and, perhaps, the 
tune may have been the Campbells' quick-jnarch for two 
centuries past. But, nevertheless, the words of the song con- 
tain intrinsic evidence, that it is not much above a century 
old. In all probability it was written about the year 1715, 
on the breaking out of the rebellion in the reign of George I. 
when John Campbell, the great Duke of Argyle, was made 
commander in chief of his Majesty's forces in North Britain, 
and was the principal means of its total suppression. I 
have seen the tune, however, in several old collections. 



This exceedingly humorous Scottish ballad was recovered 

by old David Herd, and inserted in his Collection, vol. ii. 

If \t p. 159, anno 1776. It appears to be an amplification of 

the fine old song, called " Johnnie Blunt," which will be found 

in the fourth volume of the Museum, p. 376, song 365. 

It is a curious circumstance, that this ballad furnished 
Prince Hoare with the incidents of his principal scene in his 
musical entertainment of " No Song, no Supper," acted at 
Drury-Lane, London, 1790, (the music by Storace) and 
since, at all the theatres of the united kingdom, with great 
success. It still continues a favourite on the acting list. Mr 
Hoare was also indebted to another old Scottish ballad for 
several other material incidents in the same piece, namely, 
" The Freirs of Berwik," wi-itten by Dunbar prior to the 
year 1568, as it is inserted in the Bannatyne Manuscript, in 
the library of the Faculty of Edinburgh, of that date, and 
which Allan Ramsay afterwards modernized in a poem, 
called « The Monk and the Miller's Wife." 


C * 293 1 





William Hamilton of Bangour, Esq., is a name too 
well known, although his poems are less esteemed than for- 
merly, to require any detailed notice. He was born in the 
year 1704, and long enjoyed life in the fashionable circles 
of Edinburgh. Having involved himself in the Rebellion 
of 1745, he lurked for some time in the Highlands, and at 
length escaped to the Continent. After three years' exile, 
he died at Lyons, 25th of March, 1 754. In the Archseologia 
Scotica, vol. iii. p. 255—266, there is a minute and accu- 
rate account of his life and writings, communicated by 
James Chalmers, Esq. London. 

Hamilton's " Ode on the Battle of Gladsmuir, 1745," 
was originally printed for private distribution, and was set 
to music by Macgibbon. 


In Ruddiman's Edinburgh Weekly Magazine, Dec. 
1773, vol. xxiii. p. 306, where this song first appeared, it is 
entitled " An Address to his Mistress, by the late William 
Falconer, Esq." It was copied at the time into several of 
the other Magazines. 



This song, to the tune of " Johnny's Gray Breeks," 


is included in the " Poems on Several Occasions, by John 
Lapraik. Kilmarnock, printed by John Wilson, 1788," 
8vo. pp. 240. The author, whom Burns styles " a very 
worthy, facetious old fellow," was born at Laigh Dal- 
quhram (commonly pronounced Dalfram) about three miles 
from Muirkirk, Ayrshire, in the year 1727. He was thus 
Burns' senior by thirty-two years. Having become in- 
volved as security to some persons connected with the Dou- 
glas and Heron Bank, upon its failure, in 1769, which occa- 
sioned so much distress in the West of Scotland, Lapraik's 
property was sold, and he himself reduced to poverty and 
landed in jail. He turned farmer, but afterwards settled at 
Muirkirk, where he died on the 7th of May, 1807, in the 
eightieth year of his age. These particulars are derived 
from an account of Lapraik, contained in the first number 
of *' The Contemporaries of Burns." 

Burns's admiration of this song, (which probably con- 
tains a few touches by his masterly hand, where it differs 
from the author's publication in 1788,) led him to cultivate 
an acquaintance with Lapraik, who was encouraged to ven- 
ture on printing a collection of his verses. He was a mo- 
dest man, and if, as the Ettrick Shepherd characterises 
him, he was "a very indifferent poet; indeed no poet at 
all r he at least put forth no extravagant pretensions. In 
the preface to the volume above mentioned, he states, that, 
" In consequence of misfortunes and disappointments, he 
was some years ago, torn from his ordinary way of life, and 
shut up in retirement" (in jail ?) ; and that his poems were 
composed to amuse his solitude, and with no design of pub- 
lishing them. Or, as he elsewhere expresses it, in one of 
his epistles to Burns, — 

O, far-fam'd Rab ! my silly muse. 

That thou sae praised langsyne, 
When she did scarce ken verse by prose. 

Now dares to spread her wing ; 
Unconscious of the least desert. 

Nor e'er expecting fame. 


I sometimes did myself divert 

Wi' jingling worthless rhyme, 
When sitting lanely by myself. 

Just unco griev'd and wae. 
To think that Fortune, fickle joe. 

Had kick'd me o'er the brae. 


Sir Gilbert Elliot of Minto, Baronet, the writer of 
these elegiac verses on Colonel Gardiner, was the eldest son 
of Sir Gilbert Elliot, the second Baronet, who was one of the 
Senators of the College of Justice, and Lord Justice-Clerk. 
He was born in September 1722, and being educated for 
the Scottish Bar, he passed as member of the Faculty of 
Advocates, 10th of December, 1743. He was early dis- 
tinguished by his taste for elegant literature, and long con- 
tinued a leading member in the literary circles of Edinburgh. 
* Mr Gilbert Elliot, younger of Minto,' married Miss Mur- 
ray Kynnynmound, 15th of December 1746. (Scots Mag. 
1746, p. 598). In 1754, he was elected Member of Parlia- 
ment for Selkirkshire; and was again returned in 1761. In 
1765, on a vacancy occurring in the representation of Rox- 
burghshire he resigned his seat for Selkirkshire, and was 
returned as member for his native county ; and also during 
the successive Parliaments in 1768 and 1774. On the death 
of his father, the Lord Justice- Clerk, in April 1766, he 
succeeded to the baronetcy and estates, and was succes- 
sively one of the Lords of the Admiralty, Keeper "of the 
Signet, and Treasurer of the Navy. He died at Marseilles, 
whither he went for the recovery of his health, in January 
1777. His son, Sir Gilbert, the fourth Baronet, born in 
1751, and for some time Governor- General in India, was 
raised to the Peerage by the title of Earl of Minto. 

In his literary character, there have not been many 
acknowledged compositions of Sir Gilbert Elliot's given to 
the world. He is best known as the author of the pastoral 
song ' My sheep I neglected," inserted in this work, as No. 


xciv. In the Censura Literaria, vol. viii. p. 409, 1808, 
Sir Egerton Brydges published the following lines, "found 
among the papers of an eminent literary person, lately de- 
ceased," and said to be written ' By the late Sir Gilbert 
Elliot, Bart." The Editor adds, " I will not venture to say 
that they have never been printed, before, though I do not 
recollect to have met with them." The lines, however, were 
printed in the Scots Magazine, October 1766, p. 543, 
where they are attributed " to a person of distinction ;" but 
they merit to be better known. 

The occasion was the affecting one of the funeral of the 
Earl and Countess of Sutherland, who died within fifteen 
days of each other, at Bath. The Earl was seized with 
fever, and his lady died before him, in consequence of her 
unremitting care in attending him for twenty-one successive 
days and nights. Their remains arrived at Edinburgh on 
the 4th. of July, were laid in state for some time in the 
Abbey of Holyroodhouse, and buried in one grave in the 
Abbey Church, on the 9th of July, 1766. 

Thoughts occasioned hy the Funeral of the Earl and 
CoMw^e,s,s q/" Sutherland, at the Abbey of Holyroodhouse. 
{^Composed, we have reason io believe, by a Person of distinction.'] 

' See where the Forth, by many a winding shore. 

Still undiminish'd, holds his way ; and see 
Yon Mountain hoar, a stranger to decay. 
Still as of old, o'erlooks the walled City, 
Her dwellings, spires, and rocky battlement ; 
E'en that proud Palace, rear'd by human toil. 
Still braves the stroke of Time, though long untrod 
The paved court, and silent be the hall. 
These all remain : yet in the mould'ring vault 
Sleep Scotland's boasted Kings, their ancient line 
Extinct, and all their long-descended sway 
Shrunk to this little measure : O ! farewell. 
Farewell, ye mighty names, for high exploits 
And warlike prowess fam'd ; intreated oft. 
And oft assail' d, by French or English monarch. 
Such are thy triumphs, and thy victory such, 
O Death, relentless ! whom no charm can soothe, — 


Thy valour, Bruce, nor all the civil lore 
Of the first James, nor Mary's matchless bloom, 
Ill-fated Queen ! Then -wipe your tears away ; 
I'll weep no more : let the long funeral pass. 
And darken all around : I'll weep no more. — 
True, they were young ; and noble was thy birth, 
O Sutherland ! and in thy manly mind. 
An inmate there, was seated sweet affection. 
Yet wherefore mourn? In pity Heav'n bestow'd 
An early doom : lo ! on the self-same bier 
A fairer form, cold by her husband's side. 
And faded every charm. She dy'd for thee. 
For thee, her only love. In beauty's prime. 
In youth's triumphant hour, she dy'd for thee. 
Bring water from the brook, and roses spread 
O'er their pale limbs ; for ne'er did wedded love 
To one sad grave consign a lovelier pair. 
Of manners gentler, or of purer heart ! 

Nor man alone decays : this antique tomb, 
Where mix'd with Kings they lie ; yon mountain hoar, 
And rocky battlement, one awful day 
Shall give to ruin ; while alone survives. 
Bright and imquenchable, the vital flame. 
Portion of Heav'n's own fire, which once illum'd 
High-minded virtue, or with milder glow 
Warm'd the pure breast of lovers and of friends. 

" Mrs Richmond Inglis, the daughter of Colonel Gar- 
diner, was the ' Fanny fair, all woe begone,' of Sir Gilbert 
Elliot's song, which was originally set to the tune of Barbara 
Allan." — (C. K. S.) This lady is numbered among the 
poetesses of Scotland, having published " Anna and Edgar, 
or Love and Ambition, a tale, by Mrs Richmond Inglis, 
daughter of Colonel James Gardiner, who fell at the battle 
of Preston, 1745. Edinburgh, 1781," 4to. " Mrs Rich- 
mond Gardiner relict of Mr Lawrence Inglis, Depute-Clerk 
of Bills, died at Edinburgh, 9th of June, 1795." 


This song, by Lapraik, occurs at p. 193, of his volume 
of poems, mentioned in a preceding note. It is there di- 
rected to be sung to the tune, " Lochaher no more," and 
has three more stanzas than are given in the " Museum." 



The writer of this song was Lieut.- General Sir Henry 
Erskine, Baronet, but not "of'Torry," as erroneously 
stated at page 202. He was the second son of Sir John 
Erskine of Alva, and succeeded to the baronetcy on the 
death of his elder brother. He was Deputy Quartermas- 
ter-general, and succeeded his uncle, the Hon. General St 
Clair, in the command of the Royal Scots, in 1762. He 
was long a distinguished member of the House of Com- 
mons. He died at York, when on his way to London, 9th 
of August 1765. His eldest son. Sir James Erskine, who 
was also in the army, assumed the name of St Clair ; and 
on the death of his uncle, Alexander, Earl of Rosslyn, in 
1805, he became second Earl of Rosslyn, and died in 1831. 

Mr S. mentions, that this song appeared in Herd's Col- 
lection, 1769 and 1776. It was previously printed in " The 
Lark," 1765. A letter of Sir Henry Erskine to Mr Os- 
wald of Dunikeer, chiefly relating to local improvements 
in Fife, dated 23d of July 1754, is printed in Oswald's 
Correspondence, p. 326. There is a scarce portrait of 
him, etched by David Martin, an eminent portrait-painter 
of the last centur}^ 



There is no evidence for giving " Minstrel Burn," the 
Christian name of Nicol, or making him flourish about the 
middle of the sixteenth century. His ballad, belongs to the 
first half, or perhaps the middle, of the following century. 
Mr S. evidently had confounded him with Nicol Burne, a 
Roman Catholic priest, the author of a work called " The 
Disputation concerning the Controversit Headis of Reli- 
gion, holden in the realme of Scotland, &c. Imprented at 
Parise, 1581." 8vo. ; and also of a scurrilous poem, en- 
titled " Ane Admonition to the Antichristian Ministers in 
the Deformit Kirk of Scotland, 1581." 8vo. 

AY WAKIN, O. * 299 


" Mr Stenhouse's copy of the old words seems to me 
very lame and imperfect. Here follows the ballad that I 
remember many people sang in my youth : 

When first scho cam to toon. 

They ca'd her Jess Macfarlan. 
But now scho's come an' gane. 

They ca' her the wanderin' darlin'. 
Ay wakin'. Oh ! 

Wakin ay, an' wearie, 
Sleep I can get nane 

For thinkin' o' my dearie t 

Whan I sleep, I dream. 

Whan I wake I'm eerie ; 
Sleep I can get nane 

For thinking o' my dearie ! 
I took it in my head 

To write my love a letter j 
My lassie couldna read. 

And I loed her a' the better. 
Ay wakin. Oh, &c. 

" I have been informed that Miss Macfarlan was a great 
beauty in Edinburgh, nearly ninety years ago — but met 
with a sad misfortune, which much diminished the train of 
her admirers. Seated at a ball supper, on a bench, with 
her back to the wall, a long crowded table before her, and 
many people on each side, she was suddenly seized with a 
sick qualm of the stomach, when it was almost impossible 
to remove her — horresco referens — the reader must guess the 
rest."— (C. K. S.) 



" These verses, to the tune, * Ye gallant bright,' were 
written in honour of Ann Masterton, daughter of Allan 
Masterton, author of the air of ' Strathallan's Lament.' 
She is now (says Mr Cunningham, in 1834) Mrs Derbi- 


shire, and resides in London. In her father's house the poet 
passed many happy evenings." 



" In this note Mr S. alludes to me. Unluckily I lost the 
paper I found at- Hoddam Castle, in which Barbara Allan 
was mentioned. I remember that the peasantry of Annan- 
dale sang many more verses of this ballad than have appear- 
ed in print, but they were of no merit — containing numer- 
ous magnificent offers from the lover to his mistress — and, 
among others, some ships, in sight, which may strengthen 
the belief that this song was composed near the shores of 
the Sol way. 

" I need scarcely add, that the name of Grahame, which 
the luckless lover generally bears, is still quite common in 
and about Annan. Grove, in Bishop Percy's copy of the 
ballad, is probably a corruption of Grahame." — (C. K. S.) 

The following very clever parody of ' Barbara Allan,' by 
Sir Robert Murray Keith, (in 1752), is copied from a col- 
lection entitled " The Caledoniad," London, 1775, 3 vols. 
12mo ; which contains several other poems by the same 
hand, and written about the same time. 

" A Paraphrase of the first four verses of Barbara Allan ; 
made on Lord D[ouglas]'s regiment receiving orders to 
, march from Maestrecht to Sas van Ghent, in Dutch 
Flanders. By Sir R 1 M y K -h. 

It fell about the month of June, 

Or in the month of July, 
That Jan de Back,* in the Low Countrie, 

Did use us very cruelly. 

A letter by the post he sent 

With news that was right dreary, 
That we must march to Sas van Ghent, 

Of which we'll soon be weary. 

* Secretary at War. 


" Rise up. Rise up, young men," he said, 

" 'Tis time that ye -were stepping ; 
" Of the bad air be not afraid, 

" Take aye the t'other chappin. 

" For dinna ye mind as well as me, 

" Breda, where ye were lying ; 
" The lads that drank came ofi" Scot free, 

" When the sober folk lay dying ?" 

Sir Robert Murray Keith was the eldest son of 
Robert Keith, Esq. of Murrayshall, in the county of 
Peebles, and was born about the year 1732. In the Statis- 
tical Account of the Parish of Prestonpans (1796), it is 
stated, that among " some gentlemen of the first merit, in 
their several lines of life, who were educated at the school 
there, were Sir Robert Murray Keith, and his brother Sir 
Basil Keith ; the last of whom, after an honourable life in 
the navy, died governor of Jamaica. The first still survives, 
an honovir to the coj'ps diplomatique, as a member of which 
he has done eminent services to his king and country." 
— (Vol. xvii. p. 81). He early entered the military pro- 
fession, as appears from the following notice, in July 1747, 
" Robert Keith Murray, of Murrayshall, a cornet of 
Rothes's dragoons was appointed a captain in the regiment 
of foot, now raising in Scotland, for the service of the States- 
General." — (Scots Mag. 1747, p. 351.) He remained in 
the Dutch service for some years, " greatlj'^ esteemed by his 
brother officers for his skill and judgment, as well as for his 
politeness and learning." It was during this period that he 
wrote a number of poetical pieces, which appeared in the 
above-mentioned collection, " The Caledoniad." His 
verses display a rich vein of humour, and evince that he 
was capable of higher exertions than such jeux d' esprit to 
amuse his companions. He afterwards obtained a commis- 
sion in the English army; and in 1760, we find him styled 
Robert Murray Keith, Esq. commander of a battalion of 
Highlanders, which distinguished themselves during the 
German campaigns. 


He was successively employed as minister in Saxony, 
" where he was greatly caressed by the ladies at the 
Court of Dresden ;" and at Copenhagen, where his spirited 
conduct, in rescuing the unfortunate Queen of Denmark, 
(who was sister of George III.), obtained for him great 
praise, and his honorary title. On a vacancy in Peebles-shire, 
in 1775, Sir Robert Murray Keith of Murrayshall, K.B., 
was elected M.P. for that county. In the Town and Coun- 
try Magazine, and in Ruddiman's Weekly Magazine, for 
August 1772, there appeared an article, called " Memoirs of 

SirR M K , and Madame P lie," which 

contains some anecdotes of his private life. His sister, Miss 
Anne Keith, has been noticed in these Illustrations, at p. 
* 136. The following extract is made from the obituary of 
the Gentleman's Magazine for 1795: — " June 22, died at 
Hammersmith, in his 63d year, the Right Hon. Sir Robert 
Murray Keith, K.B., one of his Majesty's most honourable 
privy-council, lieutenant-general in the army, colonel of 
the 10 th regiment of foot, and formerly ambassador-extra- 
ordinary to the Court of Vienna. He was placed in the 
diplomatic line by General, now Marshal, Conway, when 
Secretary of State. Twenty-two years ago he was sent to 
the Court of Vienna, and his brother. Sir Basil, was soon 
afterwards appointed Governor of Jamaica. His sisters 
received pensions ; and that of his father, who also had 
been a foreign envoy, was increased. Sir Robert was cor- 
pulent, with a short neck. He died in the arms of his ser- 
vant, immediately after entertaining company at dinner. 
His father. Ambassador Keith, as he was called at Edin- 
burgh, died [2 1st of September 1774] almost as suddenly." 
—(Gent. Mag. 1795, P. I., p. 535.) 



Some notice of Mr Riddell of Glenriddell, a musical 
amateur, and eminent antiquary, will be found in another 


part of this work. The lady to whom Burns alludes in his 
note to this song (see p. 215), was the sister-in-law of his 
friend Mrs Riddell, with whom he had had a quarrel, but 
who visited him during his last illness. In addition to the 
note respecting her at page * 208, it may be mentioned, 
that her first husband was Captain Walter Riddell, a 
younger brother of Glenriddell, and that, on his return 
from the West Indies, he purchased a property in the 
neighbourhood of Dumfries, which, in honour of his wife, 
he named Woodley Park. He died at his estate in Anti- 
gua, and his widow consoled herself, in March 1808, by 
marrying, as her second husband, P. L. Fletcher, Esq., 
an Irish gentleman of fortune. She resided latterly at 
Hampton Court, and died in 1812. 



" The old title of this air was, ' Put up your dagger, 
Jamie.' The words to this air are in ' Vox Borealis, or 
the Northern Discoverie, by way of dialogue between 
Jamie and Willie,' 1641. 

Put up thy dagger, Jamie, 

And all things shall be mended. 
Bishops shall fall, no not at all. 

When the Parliament is ended. 

Which never was intended 

But only for to flam thee. 
We have gotten the game. 

We'll keep the same. 
Put up thy dagger, Jamie. 

' This song,' says the author, ' was plaid and sung by 
a fiddler and a fool, retainers of General Ruthven, Governor 
of Edinburgh Castle, in scorn of the Lords and the Cove- 
nanters, for surrendering their strong holds.' " — (C.K.S.) 



Burns correctly ascribes this song to Dr Fordyce ; but 
Stenhouse, in his additions, and Allan Cunningham after 
him, fall into the mistake of confounding Professor David 
Fordyce with his brother, the Rev. Dr James Fordyce. 
David Fordyce, who was born at Aberdeen, in March 1711, 
studied at Marischal College, and was licensed to preach, 
but was never ordained. In September 1742, he was ap- 
pointed Professor of Moral Philosophy in Marischal Col- 
lege, and was the author of some philosophical works, which 
afforded the promise of his rising to eminence in the literary 
world, had he not been cut oif by a premature death, on the 
coast of Holland, 7 th of September 1751, when on his 
return from his travels in France and Italy. (Scots Ma- 
gazine, 1751, pp. 453 and 536; Chalmers' Biographical 
Dictionary, vol. xiv. p. 469). His younger brother, James, 
was born about the year 1720, and pursued the same aca- 
demical course ; and was successively minister of Brechin, 
and of Alloa, previous to his settling in London, as the 
minister of a Presbyterian Chapel there. He it was who 
obtained distinction for his pulpit eloquence, and who was 
the writer of the song, " The Black Eagle," which gives 
occasion for this note. It is printed at page 105, of 
" Poems, by James Fordyce, D.D. London: T. Cadell, 
1786," 12mo., with this note : " Intended for a pathetic 
Air of that name, in Oswald's Collection of Scotch Tunes." 
He died at Bath, 1st of October 1796, in his 76 th year. 
(Chalmers' Biogr. Diet. vol. xiv. p. 470), 



" The first half stanza of this song is old; the rest mine." 
^(Burns). " That half stanza was probably the same 
with the following, which occurs near the close of a homely 
ballad, printed in Hogg and Motherwell's edition of Burns, 


as preserved by Mr Peter Buchan ; who further communi- 
cates that the ballad was composed, in 1636, by Alexander 
Lesly of Edinburgh, on Doveranside, grandfather to the 
celebrated Archbishop Sharpe. - . 

Ye'U bring me here a pint of wine, 

A server, and a silver tassie ; 
That I may drink, before I gang, 

A health to my ain bonnie lassie. 

The fact of Burns pitching upon this one fine stanza of an 
old ballad, as a foundation for a new song, shows expres- 
sively the apt sense he had of all that was beautiful in 
poetry, and how ready his imagination was to take wing 
upon the slightest command." — (Note, Mr R. Chambers). 



At page 220, the original words of this inimitable song, 
are ascribed to Adam Skirving, of whom some account 
has been already given. (See p. * 189). Notwithstanding 
his son's silence respecting the authorship of this song, there 
is no reason for calling in question Mr Stenhouse's assertion, 
as the local character of the verses, and their caustic spirit 
and resemblance to his " Tranent Muir," would place this 
point, I think, beyond all reasonable doubt. 

This song, and its lively air, have always been popular. 
Mr Cunningham says, " The variations are numerous : I 
once heard a peasant boast, among other acquirements, that 
he could sing Johnnie Cope with all the nineteen variations." 

Burns has styled Marshall, of whose life some particulars 
will be given in the Introduction to this work, " The first 
composer of strathspeys of the age. I have been told by 
somebody, who had it of Marshall himself, that he took the 
idea of hi^ three most celebrated pieces, ' The Marquis of 


Huntley's Reel, His Farewell, and Miss Admiral Gordon's 
Reel,' from the old air ' The German Lairdie.' " 



"The notes of ^How can Ikeep^ §-0.,' appear in the second 
of Walsh's Caledonian Country Dances, and are exactly the 
same with those of ' The Wren she lies in Care's bed,' — 
otherwise Lennox's Love to Blantyre, an air said to have 
been composed on the considerable legacy, including Leth- 
ington, the ancient seat of the Maitland family, then re- 
baptized Lennox Love, which the beautiful Miss Stewart, 
celebrated by Count Hamilton, bequeathed to her cousin, 
Lord Blantyre. 

" I have always heard, ' How can I keep,' sung to this 
air. The verses, which possess considerable humour, are 
to be found in a small volume, entitled ' A Ballad Book,' 
printed in Edinburgh, and dedicated, by permission, to Sir 
Walter Scott. On the head of ' How can I keep,' we 
may observe, that the extreme indecency of the names given 
in former days to fashionable dances, is scarcely now to 
be believed. — Vide Walsh's Caledonian Country Dances,- 
where the original jig of Nancy Dawson in particular bears 
a name too gross to be repeated.! See also * The Dancer's 
Pocket Companion/ Edinb. 1774. No. 16."— (C. K. S.) 


" There is an amusing anecdote concerning the author of 
' The Spring returns, and clothes the green plains,' in an 

t " I believe it is not generally known that Nancy Dawson, the cele- 
brated dancer, was a native of Scotland. She cut her first capers near 
Kelso, where she was born, the daughter of an humble cottager. This 
information I had from a lady connected with Dr Smollett. Miss 
Nancy's relatives continued farmers in the same vicinity forty years 
ago."— (C. K. S.) 


unpublished letter from the Countess of Kintore, daughter 
of the Lord Grange to Lady Francis Erskine, daugh- 
ter of the Earl of Mar, without date of place or year — 
* Since I'm speaking of strange stories, I'll tell you one I 
had wrote me from Edinburgh this week. A lady of the 
name of Grahame, sister, they call her, to the Earl of Mon- 
teith, threatened to shoot Sandie Webster, the minister, 
for hindering Michael Menzies (Jemmy will tell you what 
he is) from marrying her. Having sent Webster a letter 
to that purpose on the Saturday, it made him stick his 
preaching on the Sunday, on her appearing in the kirk.' " — 
(C. K. S.) 

Another song by Dr Webster " Oh! how could I venture 
to love one like Thee" also to the same tune, " Alloa House," 
is printed in " The Charmer," vol. i. p. 214, with the signa- 
ture " A. W r." It had previously appeared in the 

Scots Magazine for November 1747. 

Alexander Webster, D.D. was born at Edinburgh in 
1707, and died there 25th of January, 1784, in the 77th 
year of his age, and 51st of his ministry. An excellent 
portrait of him, and a sketch of his life, appeared in the 
-Scots Magazine for April 1802. See also Kay's Portraits, 
vol. i. No. 10. 


The translator, or author, of this song, is merely called 
Mr Macdonald in Mr S.'s note. There is no doubt, how- 
ever, in regard to the person, as the song occurs at page 
123, of" The Miscellaneous Works of A. Macdonald; in- 
cluding the Tragedy of Vimonda, and those productions 
which have appeared under signature of Matthew Bramble, 
Esq." London, 1791, 8vo. 

This author, Andrew Macdonald, was the son of 
George Donald, a gardener near Leith, where he was born 
in the year 1757. He studied at the University of Edin- 
burgh, and having received deacon's orders in the Scot- 

308 * ST KILDA DAY. 

tish Episcopal Church, in 1775, the Mac was prefixed to his 
surname. For some time he was minister of an Episcopal 
chapel in Glasgow, but the inability of the congregation to 
give him any adequate support, led him to relinquish his 
ecclesiastical functions ; and he finally settled in London, 
as a literary character. 

In Alex. Campbell's " Introduction to a History of 
Poetry in Scotland," p. 317, &c., will be found an account 
of Macdonald's life. He is also noticed in D' Israeli's Cala- 
mities of Authors, and in Chalmers's Biogr. Diet., vol. xxi. 
p. 49. Mr Chalmers says, " His works were lively, sati- 
rical, and humorous, and were published under the signa- 
ture of Matthew Bramble. He naturally possessed a fine 
genius, and had improved his understanding with classical 
and scientific knowledge; but for want of connexions in 
this southern part of the United Kingdom, and a proper 
opportunity to bring his talents into notice, he was always 
embarrassed, and had occasionally to struggle with great 
and accumulated distress. He died in the 33d year of his 
age, at Kentish Town, in August 1790, leaving a wife and 
infant daughter in a state of extreme indigence." 

THE lover's address TO A ROSE-BUD. 

The authoress of this song, as stated at p. 230, was Mrs 
Scott of Wauchope. She was the niece of Mrs Cockburn, 
who wrote the set of the Flowers of the Forest, beginning 
" I've seen the smiling ;" and the following particulars are 
partly derived from a biographical sketch prefixed to a pos- 
thumous volume of her poems. 

Elizabeth Rutherford was born at Edinburgh in the 
year 1729. Her father, David Rutherford of Capehope, 
passed as advocate in 1716, and died 8th of April 1763. 
" She was early taught the Latin and French languages, 
and became a ready proficient in many branches of the 
belles lettres." Having shown an early predilection for 


poetry, it is stated, that she was benefited by the advice of 
Allan Ramsay, and that she was intimate with Dr Black- 
lock, who " constantly mentioned Miss Rutherford as a 
writer whose talents were superior, and whose poetry was 
deserving of praise," 

" Our poetess was no less celebrated for her personal 
attractions than for her intellectual endowments. The youth 
who shared her affections, and with whom she was supposed 
to have consented to pass the remainder of her days, was 
unfortunately drowned in his passage from Edinburgh to 
Ireland. The recollection of his disastrous fate clouded her 
future prospects." At rather an advanced period of life, 
she married Mr Walter Scott, whom her biographer styles 
" a country gentleman, of considerable property in the 
neighbourhood of Edinburgh." He was a farmer and pro- 
prietor of Wauchope, near Jedburgh ; and it was from 
thence that she dated the rhyming epistle in Scottish verse, 
under the name of " The Guidwife of Wauchope- House 
to Robert Burns, the Ayrshire Bard," in February 1787. 
This will probably be that lady's surest claim for future 
notice, as it called forth that reply in which Burns so finely 
expresses the ardent feelings of his youth, — 

When first amang the yellow corn 

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

Could rank my rig and lass. 

Ev'n then, a wish, I mind its pow'r, 
A wish that to my latest hour 

Shall strongly heave my breast. 
That I for poor auld Scotland's sake. 
Some usefu' plan or beuk could make. 

Or sing a sang at least. 

The rough burr-thistle, spreading wide 

Amang the bearded bear, 
I turn'd the weeder-clips aside. 

And spar'd the symbol dear. 

2 A 

310/ THE lover's address to a rose-bud. 

Burns, in his Border Tour, May 1787, paid a short visit to 
his poetical correspondent, without apparently having the 
effect of increasing their mutual regard. He says, " Set 
out next morning for Wauchope, the seat of my correspon- 
dent, Mrs Scott. " " Wauchope Mr Scott, exactly 

the figure and face commonly given to Sancho Panza — 
very shrewd in his farming matters, and not unfrequently 
stumbles on what may be called a strong thing, rather than 
a good thing. Mrs Scott, all the sense, taste, intrepidity 
of face, and bold, critical decision which usually distinguish 
female authors." Burns, in short, appears not to have 
been much taken with this lady. At Dunbar, mentioning 
" Mrs Fall, a genius in painting," he adds, " fully more 
clever in the fine arts and sciences than my friend Lady 
Wauchope, without her consummate assurance of her own 
abilities." Mrs Scott did not long survive this visit. 
" Mrs Elizabeth Rutherford, wife of Mr Walter Scott 
of Wauchope, died at Wauchope, 19th of February 1789." 
(Scots Magazine, 1789, p. 104). Several years afterwards, 
under the care of an anonymous editor, who dates the 
volume from Northampton, there was published " Alonzo 
and Cora, with other original Poems, principally Elegiac. 
By Elizabeth Scot, a native of Edinburgh. To which 
are added. Letters in verse, by Blacklock and Burns." — 
London, 1801, 8vo, pp. 168. 


" I had heard the two lines quoted here long ago, but 
" since have met with a copy of the ballad, which, if genu- 
ine, could never have been sung to the air now called ' Auld 
Robin Gray.' — Lady Anne Bernard's Ballad was first pub- 
lished, very lamely, in Herbert Croft's novel of Love and 
Madness, in (1780), founded on the murder of Miss Rae, by 
Mr Hackman, and filled with false statements, and all 
manner of absurdities. 

AULD ROBIN GRAY. . ^^'311 

" The following little poem, attributed to Lady Anne 
Lindsay, was copied from the London Monthly Magazine, 
into the Scots Magazine for May 1805."— (C, K. S.) 

Why tarries my love ? 

Ah ! where does he rove ? 
My love is long absent from me. 

Come hither my dove, 

I'll write to my love. 
And send him a letter by thee. 

To find him, swift fly ! 

The letter I'll tye 
Secure to thy leg with a string. 

Ah ! not to my leg. 

Fair lady, I beg. 
But fasten it under my wing. 

Her dove she did deck. 

She drew o'er his neck 
A bell and a collar so gay. 

She tied, to his wing, » 

The scroll with a string. 
Then kissed him and sent him away. 

It blew and it rain'd 

The pigeon disdained 
To seek shelter, undaunted he flew. 

Till wet was his wing. 

And painful his string. 
So heavy the letter it grew. 

He flew all around. 

Till Colin he found. 
Then perched on his head with the prize 

Whose heart while he reads. 

With tenderness bleeds. 
For the pigeon that flutters and dies. 

Lady Anne Barnard died at her house in Berkely 
Square, London, 6th of May 1825, aged seventy-five. 
Her ladyship communicated to Sir Walter Scott, a revised 
copy of ' Auld Robin Gray,' with two versions of a continu- 
ation or second part, which he printed, in a thin 4 to volume, 
and presented to the members of the Bannatyne Club, in 


1824. In the preface is inserted an interesting letter from 
Lady Anne, detailing the incidents that led to the compo- 
sition of this V£ry popular ballad, " soon after the close of 
the year 1771." The two versions of the second part form 
no exception to the character of continuations in general, 
as they are much inferior to the original ballad. 

" Lady Anne Barnard's face was pretty, and replete 
with vivacity; her figure light and elegant; her conversa- 
tion lively ; and, like that of the rest of her family, pecu- 
liarly agreeable. Though she had wit, she never said ill- 
natured things to show it ; she gave herself no airs, either 
as a woman of rank, or as the authoress of ' Auld Robin 

" She resided many years in London with her sister, 
Lady Margaret Fordyce, whose beauty had been very un- 
common. When Sir W. S. projected his contribution of a 
book to the Bannatyne Club, he requested Lady Anne to 
allow him to republish her celebrated song, to which she con- 
sented, and afterwards sent him numerous other poems by 
herself and her family, which he printed in a quarto volume, 
with the title of ' Lays of the Lindsays.' Unluckily, before 
the book was circulated, the lady and her friends changed 
their minds, and all was suppressed save the song of Robin 
Gray and its continuation. When Lady Anne died, she 
bequeathed to Sir Walter the sum of fifty pounds, probably 
as a compensation for the expense he had incurred respect- 
ing ' The Lays.' It is much to be regretted that this 
volume was buried in oblivion." — (C.K.S.) 

WHISTLE o'er the LAVE O'T. 

" I WAS once gravely told by an old woman, that, in her 
youth, a person crossing the churchyard of Glasgow in a 
moonshine night, saw a male acquaintance of his own, a 
sailor, who had been some time dead, and the devil dancing 
round the tombstone of the former, the fiend playing' 

WHISTLE o'er THE LAVE o't. *313 

" Whistle o'er the lave o't," on a kit, or fiddle. She added, 
that " the drum gaed through the town" the next day, for- 
bidding every body to sing, whistle, or play the tune in 
question." — (C. K. S.) 


" The original words of this song," which Mr S, has 
inserted at page 237, from " The Tea-Table Miscellany," 
were probably imitated from Sir Henry Wotton's beautiful 
verses in praise of a Happy Life. — See " Reliquiae Wot- 
toniana?," edit. 1685, p. 383, and Percy's Reliques, vol. i. 


There is an old stall-copy of this ballad, with the title 
" Donald and Flora. On the late misfortune of General 
Burgoyne, and his gallant army." The author, Hector 
Macneill, Esq., was born at Rosebank, near Roslin, 22d 
of October 1746, and died at Edinburgh, 15th of March 
1818. An interesting account of his life, derived from the 
autobiography of the poet, appeared in Blackwood's Maga- 
zine, December 1818; where it is said to be " a very 
entertaining and instructive work, and which, we under- 
stand, will probably be given to the public." This work, 
however, remains still unpublished. The account given by 
Mr R. Chambers, in his Scottish Biography, of Mr Mac- 
neill's destitute circumstances, towards the close of his life,, 
is far from being correct. 

MY heart's in the HIGHLANDS, 

" I SUBJOIN the pretty words of the old song, which was 
a favourite with Sir Walter Scott, from a stall copy in my 
possession.". — (C. K. S.) 

314 * MY heart's in the highlands, 


The first day I landed, it was on Irish ground. 
The tidings came to me from fair Derry town. 
That my love was married, and to my sad woe j 
And I lost my first love by courting too slow. 

Let us drink and go hame, drink and go hame. 
If we stay any longer, we'll get a bad name ; 
We'll get a bad name, and we'll fill ourselves fou. 
And the strong walls of Derry it's ill to go through. 

When I was in the Highlands it was my use," 
To wear a blue bonnet, the plaid, and the trews. 
But now since I'm come to the fair Irish shore. 
Adieu to Valendery and bonny Portmore. 

Let us, &c. 

O, bonny Portmore, thou shines where thou stands. 
The more I look on thee, the more my heart warms, 
But when I look from thee, my heart is full sore. 
When I think on the lilly I lost at Portmore. 
Let us, &c. 

O, Donald, O, Donald, O ! where have you been ? 
A hawking and hunting ; gar make my bed clean. 
Go make my bed clean, and stir up the straw. 
My heart's in the Highlands wherever I go. 

Let us, &c 

My heart's in the Highlands, my heart is not here. 
My heart's in the Highlands, a chasing the deer; 
A chasing the deer, and following the doe ; - 
My heart's in the Highlands wherever I go. 
Let us, &c. 

There is many a word spoken, but few of the best. 
And he that speaks fairest lives longest at rest | 
I speak by experience — my mind serves me so. 
But my heart's in the Highlands wherever I go. 

* Due, in the original Sir W. S. has written on the margin, "use, 


MY heart's in the HIGHLANDS. * 315 

Let us drink and go liame, drink and go hame. 
If we stay any longer well get a bad name ; 
We'll get a bad name, and \^e'll fill ourselves fou. 
And the strong walls of Derry it's ill to go through. 


" The verses printed by Bishop Percy belong to an- 
other air, well known in Scotland, and lately much in 
fashion. I never heard the country people sing more of the 
soi;ig than this : 

Hoo are ye, kimmer, 

An' hoo do ye thrive ? 
Hoo mony bairns hae ye ? 

Kimmer, I hae five. 

An' we're a noddin, 

Nid, nid, noddin ; 
An' we're a noddin 

At our house at hame. 

Are they a' Johnnie's bairns ? 

Na, kimmer, na ! 
For three o' them were gotten 

Whan Johnnie was awa ! 
An' we're a,' &c. 

Cats like milk. 

And dogs like broo ; 
Lads like lasses. 

And lasses lads too. 
An' we're, &c. 

(C. K. S.) 


ca' the ewes to the knowes. 
Burns says, " This beautiful song is in the true old Scotch 
taste, yet I do not know that either air or words were in 

316 * ca' the ewes to the knowes. 

print before." And Cromek adds, on the authority of Mrs 
Burns, that the last verse, ' While ivaters wimple to the sea,' 
was written by her husband. See what he himself has said 
at p. 249. " This song (says Mr / llan Cunningham) is 
partly old and partly new ; what is old is very old, what is 
new was written by a gentleman of the name of Pagan." 

In Ayrshire, however, the song has been assigned to 
a different person, named Isabel Pagan, who kept a kind 
of low tippling house in the neighbourhood of Muirkirk, and 
who published a small volume, " A Collection of Songs 
and Poems," at " Glasgow, printed by Niven, Napier, and 
Khull, Trongate," (about the year 1805?) 12mo, pp. 76. 
The following lines are part of what she calls, " An Ac- 
count of the Author's Lifetime :" — 

I was born near four miles from Nith-head, 

Where fourteen years I got my bread ; 

My learning it can soon be told. 

Ten weeks, when I was seven years old. 

With a good old religious wife 

Who liv'd a quiet and sober life, .... 

But a' the whole tract of my time 

I found myself inclin'd to rhyme. 

When I see merry company, 

I sing a song with mirth and glee. 

And sometimes I whisky pree ; 

But 'deed it's best to let it be. 


I lo'e na a laddie but ane. 
The Reverend John Clunie, whom Burns celebrated 
(see page 249), for his vocal skill, and to whom he attri- 
butes this song, was minister of Borthwick, Mid-Lothian. 
He had been schoolmaster and precenter at Markinch, pre- 
viously to his being ordained. He died at Greenend, near 
Edinburgh, 13th of April 1819, in the 62d year of his age, 
and the 29th of his ministry. 



It is a mistake to suppose that Ramsay's song in the Tea- 
Table Miscellany, " I have a green purse," to the tune 
of " A rock and a wee pickle tow," has any reference to a 
song under that title, by Ross of Lochlee. His song was 
founded upon one of a much earlier date. See page 391, 
and the additional Note to song ccccxxxix. 



" O MERRY hae I been teithen a heckle — alias, the Bob- of 
Dunblaine — and now said, but I believe falsely, to be the 
jig which Prince Charles Stuart danced with the Countess 
of Wemyss at Holyroodhouse." — (C. K. S.) 


The following excellent song, to this air, by Joanna 
Baillie, was written for Mr George Thomson's collec- 
tion of the Select Melodies of Scotland^ 

When white was my o'erlay as foam on the linn, * 
And siller was chinking my pouches within ; 
When my lambkins were bleating on meadow and brae. 
As I gaed to my love in new deeding so gay : 

Kind was she, and my friends were free. 

But poverty parts good company. 

How swift pass'd the minutes and hours of delight. 
When piper play'd cheerly, and cruisy burnt bright j 
And link'd in my hand was the maiden so dear. 
As she footed the floor in her holy-day gear. 

Woe is me ! and can it then be. 

That poverty parts sic company ! 

We met at the fair, and we met at the kirk ; 
We met i' the sunshine, we met i' the mirk ; 

" Overlay, a neckcloth. 


And the sound o' her voice, and the blinks o' her ey'n. 
The cheering and life o' my bosom ha'e been. 

Leaves frae the tree at Martinmas flee. 

And poverty parts sweet company. 

At bridal and infare I've braced me wi' pride,* 
The bruse I ha'e won, and a kiss of the bride ;t 
And loud was the laughter gay fellows among. 
When I utter'd my banter, or chorus'd my song. 

Dowie and dree are jesting and glee 

When poverty spoils good company. 

Wherever I gaed the blyth lasses smiled sweet. 
And mithers and aunties were unco disci'eet. 
While kebbuck and beaker were set on the board, 
But now they pass by me, and never a word ! 

So let it be — for the warldly and slee 

Wi' poverty keep na company. 

But the hope of my love is a cure for its smart ; 
The spae-wife has tell'd me to keep up my heart. 
For wi' my last saxpence her loof I ha'e cross'd : 
And the bliss that is fated can never be lost. 

Cruelly, though we ilka day see. 

How poverty parts dear company. 

" In the table of contents, the music of this pathetic ad- 
dress is said to have been composed by Miss Johnston of 
Hilton. This lady, Lucy Johnston, was subsequently the 
wife of Richard Oswald, of Auchincruive, Esq. Burns has 
celebrated her in a song of less merit than usual : according 
to Dry den, 

Whate'er the did was done with so much ease. 
In her alone 'twas natural to please : ~ 
Her motions ail accompanied with grace ; 
And Paradise was open'd in her face. 

* Infare, the entertainment made for the reception of a bride in the 
house of the bridegroom. 

t Bruse, a race at country weddings, the winner of which- has the 
privilege of saluting the bride. 

o mary! dear departed shade. '*319 

" None who ever had the delight of seeing her in the 
ball-room, giving double charms to a minuet, or dignifying 
a country-dance, can question the truth of this feeble en- 
comium." — (C. K. S.) 

Mr Stenhouse's remark on Burns' MS., at the end of 
this note, is not quite appropriate, inasmuch as he was in 
the habit of sending copies of his verses to different corre- 
spondents, and retaining the original draughts. Thus, for 
instance, that fine song, ccxxxi., * Go fetch to me a pint 
of wine,' was transmitted to Johnson, but Cromek afterwards 
obtained another "among his MSS., in his own [Burns'] 
hand-writing, with occasional interlineations, such as occur 
in all his primitive effusions." — (^Reliques, p. 412.) 


Elizabeth Halket, second daughter of Sir Charles 
Halket of Pitferran, and wife of Sir Henry Wardlaw of Pit- 
reavie and Balmule, near Dunfermline, was the authoress of 
this noble ballad. She was born in April 1677; became, by 
marriage. Lady Wardlaw, in June 1696, and died in 1727. 
— See p. 268, or rather the Life of Allan Ramsay, by Geo. 
Chalmers, prefixed to his edition of Ramsay's Poems. Lon- 
don, 1800, 2 vols. 8vo. It is much to be regretted that we 
have less information than could be desired respecting a per- 
son who was possessed of unquestionable genius. From Mr 
Chalmers's inquiries it appeared that Lady Wardlaw was the 
undoubted author of Hardyknute, although her brother-in- 
law. Sir John H. Bruce of Kinross, was employed in its pub- 
lication; and that her friends concurred in saying that Lady 
W. " was a woman of elegant accomplishments, who wrote 
other poems, and practised drawing, and cutting paper with 
her scissors; and who had much wit, and humour, with great 
sweetness of temper." The song, or ballad, of ' Gilderoy,' is 
the only other composition hitherto attributed to her ; but, 
notwithstanding the great antiquity that has been claimed for 




" Sir Patrick Spence," one of the finest ballads in our lan- 
guage, very little evidence would be required to persuade 
me that we were not also indebted for it to Lady Ward- 

In the Museum, the well-known song ^' Ah, Chloris ! 
could I now but sit. To the tune of Gilderoy," is printed 
under the title of ' Gilderoy ;' and in the original table of 
contents, the name of " Sir Alex. Halket" is added as its 
author. Ritson, by some most unusual oversight, refers to 
this work as his authority for ascribing the ballad itself of 
Gilderoy to Sir Alexander Halket. The original ballad, 
which refers to " the arch-rebel, Patrick Macgregor alias 
Gilleroy," who was executed at Edinburgh in 1636, has 
been often printed and altered : — it is the copy that appears 
in Percy's Reliques, Ritson's Scotish Songs, &c., wPiich 
was remodelled by Lady Wardlaw. 

The song in the Museum, to the tune of Gilderoy, has lat- 
terly been confidently ascribed to Duncan Forbes of Culloden. 
— See Culloden Papers, Chambers's Songs, vol. i. p. l,and 
p. 70 of this work. It has been shown, however, at p. * 133, 
that the actual author was Sir Charles Sedley, the English 
dramatic poet. Since that sheet was printed I find the song 
■ occurs at p. 221 of " The New Academy of Complements, 
i&c. Compiled by L. B., Sir C. S., Sir W. D., and others, 
the most refined Wits of this Age. London, printed for 
Thomas Rooks, 1671." 18mo. The first line reads, '■'^ Ah, 
Chloris ! that I now could sit ;" and it contains the following 
concluding stanza, omitted in the Tea-Table Miscellany, 
and in various subsequent collections of songs. 

Though now I slowly bend to love. 

Uncertain of my fate. 
If your fair self my chains approve, 

I shall my freedom hate. 
Lovers, like dying men, may well 

At first disorder'd be. 
Since none alive can truly tell 

What fortune they must see. 


To return to the immediate subject of this note. Hardy- 
knute was greatly admired by Sir Walter Scott, and he 
used frequently to quote passages from it. On the fly-leaf 
of his copy of Ramsay's " Evergreen," 1724, in which the 
ballad appeared in an amended form, he says, " Hardyknute 
was the first poem I ever learnt — the last that I shall for- 
get." Alluding to Pinkerton's attempt to complete this 
"most spirited and beautiful imitation of the ancient bal- 
lad," he remarks, " that, in order to append his own con- 
clusion to the original tale, Mr P. found himself under the 
necessity of altering a leading circumstance in the old bal- 
lad, which would have rendered his catastrophe inappli- 
cable. With such license, to write continuations and con- 
clusions would be no difficult task." — (Poetical Works, 
12mo edition, vol. i. p. 73). Pinkerton's imitations are 
deservedly held in little estimation ; but it is somewhat 
amusing to see with what indignation they were treated by 
Rltson, who wound up the whole, by exclaiming, "_.Thou 
write Pindarics, and be d — d^!"^^ — (Scotish Songs, 1794, 
vol. 1. p. do). 


There is some confusion in Mr Stenhouse's note on this 
song. The original ballad was written before either Bar- 
clay or Burns were born. Burns did little more than 
abridge it, in his version^ printed in this Work. See Mo- 
therwell's edition of Burns, vol. ii. p. 164-177. 

The old ballad on the battle of Sheriffmuir, to the tune 
" We ran and they ran," is ascribed by Burns to the Rev. 
Murdoch M'Lennan, minister of Crathie, Dee-side. 
(Reliques, p. 245.) It will be found in Herd's, Ritson's, 
and subsequent collections, and also in Hogg's Jacobite 
Relics, second series. The author, to whom it is thus 
assigned, was settled as minister of Crathie, in 1749, but 
he had been previously ordained. He died there 22d of 
July 1783, in the 50th year of his ministry, and 32d of his 


The Reverend John Barclay, tlie author of the song 
printed at page 271, and founder of the religious sect named 
Bereans, was born in the parish of Muthill, in the year 
1734. He studied at St Andrews for the church, and was 
licensed to preach 27th of September 1759, and was for 
several years assistant minister of Fettercairn. It would be 
out of place, however, to enter upon his subsequent history, 
or to enumerate his writings, of which a very full account 
will be found in Chambers's Scottish Biography, vol. i. p. 
127-135, contributed by the late Mr Bower, historian of 
the University of Edinburgh. 

Mr Barclay died at Edinburgh, 29th of July 1 798. He 
was the uncle of Dr John Barclay, the eminent anatomist, 
in Edinburgh, who occasionally wrote verses : witness his 
song, " A hundred years h^nce," written for the " Gymnas- 
tic Club." 


" A COMPLETE copy of this ballad is printed in Mr Mo- 
therwell's Minstrelsy, with one small error. The second 
stanza should run thus — 

When steeds -was saddled and well bridled, 

And ready for to ride ; 
Then out it came her false Frendraught, 

Inviting them to bide. 

" In the Kirk Session Records of Perth, is the following 
entry respecting this tragical event: — * July 8 (1631), fif- 
teen shillings given by Andrew Bell, Master of Hospital, 
to an Northland gentlewoman, become frantic through 
tining of her husband, burnt in the place of Frendraught.' " 
— (C. K. S.) 


This song appeared in the Scots Weekly Magazine, for 


April 1776. As some account of the author is given by- 
Mr S. in the note to song cci., it may be mentioned that 
the " Theological Works of the late Rev. John Skinner, 
Episcopal clergyman in Longside, Aberdeenshire : to which 
is prefixed, a Biographical Memoir of the Author," were 
printed at Aberdeen, 1809, 2 vols. 8vo. The Memoir, 
which is anonymous, was written by the author's son. Bishop 
Skinner of Aberdeen. It was speedily followed by the pub- 
lication of " A Miscellaneous Collection of Fugitive Pieces 
of Poetry, by the late Rev. John Skinner, at Longside, 
Aberdeenshire, (being) Vol. III. of his Posthumous 
Works." Edinburgh, 1809, 8vo. 


Dr Currie, in his Life of Burns, has given an account 
of William Nicol, one of the masters of the Grammar High 
School of Edinburgh, and the Poet's companion in . his 
Tour to the Highlands. He says, " Mr Nicol was of Dum- 
friesshire, of a descent equally humble with our poet. Like 
him, he rose by the strength of his talents, and fell by the 
strength of his passions. He died in the summer of 1797." 
— (vol. i. p. 177.) Allan Masterton, the other person to 
whom this first rate convivial song relates, was a writing- 
master in Edinburgh, and did not long survive his com- 
panions. He died in or about the year 1800. 



" The heroine of this song, ' / gaed a waefiH gate 
yestreen,' was Miss Jean Jeffrey, daughter of the minister 
of Lochmaben. The lady, now Mrs Ren wick, after residing 
some time in Liverpool, ultimately settled with her husband 
in New- York, North America. Mr Riddell, of Glenriddell, 
composed the air." — (Motherwell's edition of Burns, vol. ii. 
p. 133.) 



The Reverend William Cameron, died at the manse 

of Kirknewton, in the 60th year of his age, and the 26th of 

his ministry, on the 17th of November 1811. He was an 

r assiduous, and not an unsuccessful wooer of the muses. His 

.; ; first work, a Collection of Poems, printed at Edinburgh, 

\ \ 1780, 12mo, was anonymous. In 1781, along with the Rev. 

1 1 John Logan of Leith, and the Rev. Dr. John Morison, 

1 1 minister of Canisbay, in the county of Caithness, (who 

1 1 died in 1798), Mr Cameron rendered material assistance 

|!in preparing the admirable collectionof Paraphrases now 

I fin use in our Establishect Church-. A posthumous volume 

\ p£ Poems was published by subscription. Edinburgh : 1813. 








This song, beginning " Sweet closes the evening on Craigie- 
burn Wood," was written by Burns in 1790, on purpose for 
the Museum. About five years thereafter, he curtailed two 
verses of the original copy, and altered some of the lines. 
His last edition of the song is here annexed. 

Sweet fa's the eve on Craigie-burn, 
And blithe awakes the morrow ; 
But a' the pride o' spring's return 
Can yield me nocht but sorrow. 

I see the flowers and spreading trees, 
I hear the wild birds singing ; 
But what a weary wight can please. 
When care his breast is wringing. 

Fain, fain would I my griefs impart. 
Yet darena for your anger ; 
But secret love will break my heart. 
If I conceal it langer. 

If thou refuse to pity me ; 

If thou shalt love another ; 

When yon green leaves fade frae the tree. 

Around my grave they'll wither. 

The reader, by comparing the above verses with the ori- 
ginal in the Museum, will be enabled to form his opinion, 
how far our bard has improved the song by his latter altera- 



Burns composed this song on a passion which a particular 
friend of his, Mr Gillespie, had for Miss Jane Lorimer of 
King-shall, in Kirkmahoe, Dumfriesshire, afterwards Mrs 
Whelpdale. The young lady was born at Craigie-burn 
Wood. The chorus is part of an old foolish ballad. — 

Beyond thee, dearie, heyond thee, dearie ; 
And O to he lying beyond thee ! 
O sweetly, soundly, viay he sleep, 
That's laid in the bed beyond thee ! 

The air, called " Craigie-burn Wood," taken down from a 
country girl's singing, was considered by the late Mr Ste- 
phen Clarke as one of our finest Scottish tunes. At the 
foot of the manuscript of the music of this song is the follow- 
ing note,, in the hand-writing of Mr Clarke, There is no need 
to mention the chorus. The man that wotdcl attempt to sing' 
a chorus to this, beautiful air, . should have his throat cid to 
prevent Iiim from doing it again ! ! " It is remarkable of 
this air (says Burns), that it is the confine of that country 
where the greatest part of our Lowland music (so far as from 
the title, words, &c. we can localize it) has been composed. 
From Craigie-burn, near Moffat, until one reaches the 
West Highlands, we haysa- scarcely one slow air of any AUtu 
qnity. ''''^—Ileliques. ■ •;.;-; r-'vys' 

Dr Currie- informs u^^ 'that " Craigie-burn Wood is si- 
tuated on the banks of the Kiver Moffat, and about three 
miles distant from the village of that name, celebrated for its 
medicinal waters. The woods of Craigieburn and of Dum- 
crieff, were at one time favourite haunts of Burns. It was 
there he met the ' Lassie wi' the lint-white locks,' and that 
he conceived several of his beautiful lyrics." 



BuENs says, " I added the last four lines by way of 
giving a turn to the theme of the po^m, such as it is." — J?e- 
Uques. Tfhe vyhole song, however, is in his own hand- writing, 
and I have reason to believe it is all his own. The versQs 


are adapted to the tune of " Carron Side,'' taken from Os- 
wald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. viii. It is very 
pretty ; but the composer of it has borrowed some passages 
from the old air, called " Todlen Hame." 


According to tradition, Robert Aldridge, bishop of 
Carlisle, about the year 1560, seduced the wife of Hugh 
Graham, one of those bold and predatoi'y chiefs who so long 
inhabited what was called the debateable land on the English 
and Scottish border. Graham being unable to bring so 
powerful a prelate to justice, in revenge made an excursion 
into Cumberland, and carried off, infer alia, a fine mare be- 
longing to the bishop ; but being closely pursued by Sir 
John Scroope, warder of Carlisle, with a party on horse- 
back, was apprehended near Solway Moss, and carried to 
Carlisle, where he was tried and convicted of felony. Great 
intercessions were made to save his life ; but the bishop, it is 
said, being determined to remove the chief obstacle to his 
guilty passions, remained inexorable, and poor Graham fell a 
victim to his own indiscretion and his wife's infidelity. Antho- 
ny Wood observes, that there were many changes in this 
prelate's time, both in church and state, but that he retained 
his offices and preferments during them all. 

Burns acquaints us, that there are several editions of this 
ballad, and that the one which is inserted in the Museum is 
from oral tradition in Ayrshire, where, when he was a boy, 
it was a popular song, and that it originally had a simple old 
tune, which he had forgotten.— -FwZe Reliques. The copy 
transmitted to Johnson is entirely in Burns's own hand- 

The reader will find an edition of this ballad in the sixth 
volume of Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy, 
printed at London in 1714. It is called " The Life and 
Death of Sir Hugh of the Grime. To the tune of Chevy- 
Chace." Many corruptions have crept into this copy, such 


as Grime for Graham or Graeme ; Garland toivn for Carlisle 
town, &c. Sir Walter Scott has given us another edition in his 
Minstrelsy of the Border, which he obtained from his friend, 
Mr W. Laidlaw in Blackhouse, that had long been current 
in Selkirkshire. Mr Ritson, in his Ancient Songs, has like- 
wise published this border ditty, from a collation of two old 
black-letter copies, one in the collection of the late John, 
Duka of Roxburgh, and another in the hands of John 
Bayne, Esq. These diiferent versions of the ballad nearly 
coincide with respect to the main incidents of the story. The 
tune to which the verses are adapted in the Museum, may 
be seen in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, under 
the title of " Drimen Duff." Some of the stanzas in the 
Museum have no doubt been corrected by Burns ; and the 
localizing the song to Stirling in place of Carlisle, is evidently 
erroneous. In other respects, however, it appears to be the 
best edition of the ballad. 



The words of this song were written by Mr John Lear- 
mont, gardener at Dalkeith. It was sent to Burns, who 
returned it to the publisher with some verbal amendments. — 
Mr Learmont, in 1791, pubUshed a volume of Poems, pas- 
toral, satirical, tragic, and comic; carefully corrected by 
the author. Some of his pieces possess considerable poetic 
merit. Mr Learmont's verses, beginning 0' mighty Nature's 
handywarlis, are adapted to the tune called " The Butcher 

The only remains of this curious old ballad are the tune, 
and the following fragment of the words, preserved by Herd. 

John, come kiss me now, now, now. 
Oh ! John, come kiss me now ; 
John, come kiss me hy and by, 
And make nae mair ado. 


Some will court and cotnpliment. 
And make a great ado ; 
Some will make of their gudeman. 
And sae will I of you. 

John, come kiss vie, S^'c. 

In a former part of this work, see notes on song, No. 260, 
entitled " John Anderson," it has been shewn that the tra- 
dition, of the Reformers having borrowed several of the most 
favourite hymn tunes used in the CathoUc cathedrals, and 
adapted them to burlesque verses, in derision of old mother 
church, is equally absurd, as it is contrary to the direct evi- 
dence of the service-books themselves, which were used in 
these churches. On the contrary, the Reformers not only 
called into their aid some of the finest airs among the laity, 
but hkewise spiritualized, or rather parodied, many of their 
common songs, in order to forward their views. Of this 
number was the song of John, come Mss me 7iow. 

In a manuscript, " Historic of the Estate of the Kirke of 
Scotland, written by an old Minister of the Kirke of Scotland, 
at the desire of some of his young brethren for their infor- 
matione," a, d. 1560, which was formerly in the possession 
of Mr George Paton of the Custom-house, it is said, that 
'' for the more particular meanes wherby came the knowledge 
of God's truth in the time of great darkness, was such as Sir 
David Lindseyes poesie, Wedderhurne's Psalmes and Godlie 
Ballands of godlie purposes, &c." This Wedderburne, who 
was likewise author of " The Complaint of Scotland," printed 
in 1549, quotes several of the songs in that work, which we af- 
terwards parodied in a considerable volume, published for the 
second time by Andro Hart, in 1621, under the title o^ Ane 
compendius Booke of Godly and Spiritual Songs, collectit out 
ofsundrie partes of the Scripture, with sundrie of other Bal- 
lates ; changed out of prophaine SANGEs,^r avoyding of 
sinne and haoiotrie, with augmentation ofsundrie gude and 
godlie ballates, not contained in the first edition. Newlie 
correctict and amended by the first original! copie. 

Among these ballads, John^ come Mss me now, makes his 



appearance in his penitential habit, which^ it must be admit- 
ted, is not a little grotesque, although he has been stripped 
of the profane dress which had promoted simie and liariotrie. 
We annex, as a specimen, two stanzas of this newly-converted 
godly ballad. 

John, come kiss me now, 
John, come kiss me now / 
John, come kiss me by and by,^ 
And mak na mair ado. 

My prophets call, my preachers cry, 
John, come kiss me noiu ; 
John, come kiss me by and by, 
And mak na mair ado. S^c. S<;c. 

The stanzas in the Museum were altered by Burns ; of the 
merit of these alterations the reader will be enabled to judge, 
on comparing the old fragment, quoted above, with the copy 
of the song inserted in that work. 

In Gow's Second Collection of Strathspeys, Reels, &c. page 
8th, there is a tune called the " New-rigged Ship, or Miss 
Pindlay's Delight;" the second strain of which is a mere 
copy of the second part of the air of " John^ come kiss me 
now," thrown into triple time. 

The celebrated Wm Byrd, organist of the Chapel Royal 
in 1575, well known as the author of the musical canon of 
" Non nobis Domine," made fifteen learned and difficult 
variations upon the air of " John, come kiss me now," which 
are inserted in Queen Elizabeth's Virginal Book, MSS. 1576. 


The words of this song were copied into the Museum 
from Herd's Collection, vol. ii. page 135. The ^ author is 
anonymous. The verses are adapted to the old air of " Ah 
ha ! Johnie, lad, ye're nae sae kind's you sud hae been." 

The words of this old rural ditty, beginning " The coun- 
try swain that haunts the plain," were recovered by Herd, 


and inserted in his valuable Collection, in 1776. The au- 
thor has not yet been discovered ; but the tune has long been 
a favourite reel in the Lowlands of Scotland, and is printed in 
many collections. 


Burns, in his Reliques, observes, that " this is a popular 
Ayrshire song, though the notes were never taken down 
before. It, as well as many of the ballad tunes in this Col- 
lection, (viz. the Museum,) was written from Mrs Burns's 

It was an old song, however, in the days of Ramsay ; for 
we find the very words of it, beginning " A southland Jenny 
that was right bonnie," in his Tea-Table Miscellany, with 
the letter Z annexed, to point out that even in his time it 
was known to be old. ■ :c'.i-M'U.- ■?.' (-Vf^' 


This lively old Scottish tune, under the title of " Joh my« 
cock vip thy Beaver,'' is to be found in " The Dancing- Mas- 
ter," a very curious collection of Scots, English, and Irish 
Tunes, published by old John Play ford of London in 1657. 
It is likewise preserved in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Com- 
panion, vol. 7th, and in many other Collections. 

The fragment of the ancient song, beginning " Wlren first 
my dear Johnny," as preserved in Herd's Collection, is an- 
nexed, to shew the improvements it received from Burns be- 
fore it was inserted in Johnson's Museum. 

When first my dear Johnny came to this toiun. 
He had a blue bonnet that ivanted the croiun ; 
But now he has gotten a hat and a feather. 
Hey, my Johnny, lad, cock up your beaver : 
Cock up your beaver, cock up your heaver, 
Hey, my Johnny lad, cock xip your heaver ; 
Cock up your beaver, and cock it nae wrang, 
We'll a' to England ere it he lang. 

The improved copy, all in the hand-writing of Burns, is 

now before me. 


Thijs is another edition of the old Scottish song, entitled 
" Come hap me with thy Petticoat." See the remarks on song 
No 139, beginning O Bell, thy looks have kiWd my heart. 


This tune is very old. There is a copy of it in square- 
shaped notes in a manuscript book for the Virginals, in the 
Editor's possession, under the title of " The newe Gowne 
made." The ballad, beginning " O let me in this ae night," 
was printed in Herd's Collection in 1776 ; but it was retouch- 
ed by Burns, to I'ender it less objectionable, before Johnson 
would give it a place in the Museum. 

In 1795, Burns altered the old verses a second time. His 
last improvements are now subjoined. 

O LASSIE, art thou sleeping yet ? 
Or art thou waking I would wit ? 
For love has bound me hand and foot. 
And I wou'd fain be in, jo. 


O let me in this ae night, 
This ae, ae, ae, night : 
For pity's sake, this ae night, 
O rise and let me in, jo. 

Thou hear'st the winter wind and weet, 
Nae star blinks thro' the driving sleet, 
Tak pity on my weary feet. 
And sliield me frae the rain, joi. 
O let me in, &c. 

The bitter blast that round me blaws. 
Unheeded howls, unheeded fa's ; 
The cauldness o' thy heart's the cause 
Of a' my grief and pain, jo. 

O let me in. Sec. 


TELL na me o' wind and i-ain. 
Upbraid na ine wi' cauld disdain ; 
Gae back the gate ye cam again, 

1 winna let you in, jo. 



I tell you now this ae night, 
This ae, ae, ae, night ; 
And ancefor a this ae night, 
I ivinna let you in, jo. 

The snellest blast at mirkest hours. 
That round the pathless wand'rer pours. 
Is nocht to what poor she endures 
That's trusted faitUess man, jo. 
/ tell you noiv, &c. 

The sweetest flower that deck'd the mead, 
Now trodden like the vilest weed ; 
Let simple maid the lesson read. 
The weird may be her ain, jo, 

/ tell you now, &c. 

The bird that charm'd his summer-day 
Is now the cruel fowler's prey; 
Let witless, trusting- woman, say. 
How aft her fate's the same, jo, 

/ tell you noiu, &c. 

If the song, as it stands in Herd's Collection, has lost any 
thing in point of wit and humour, it has at any rate gained 
much in respect of elegance and modesty, by the judicious 
alterations of our bard. We agree with Mr Thomson, that 
Burns has displayed great address in the above song, and 
that the young woman's answer is excellent, and, at the same 
time, takes away the indelicacy that, otherwise would have 
attached to her lover's entreaties. 

Burns, in the course of the same year, produced the fol- 
lowing English verses to the same air. 

Tune, " Let me in this ae night," 
Forlorn, my love, no comfort near. 
Far, far from thee, I wander here ; 
Far, far from thee, the fate severe. 
At which I most repine, love. 


O wert thou love but near me ; 
But near, near, near me ; 
How kindly thou wouldst cheer me, 
And mingle sighs ivith mine, love. 

Around me scowls a wintry sky. 
That blasts each bud of hope and joy °, 


And shelter, shade, nor home hare 1, 
Save in these arms of thme, love. 
O wert thou, &c. 

Cold, alter'd friendship's cruel part, 
To poison fortune's ruthless dart — 
Let me not break thy faithfvd heart. 
And say that fate is mine, love. 
O wert thou, &c. 

But dreary though the moment's fleet, 
O let me think we yet shall meet ! 
That only ray of solace sweet. 
Can on thy Chloris shine, love. 
O wert thou. Sec. 


Thk words of this song, " O meikle thinks my Luve o' my 
Beauty," were written by Burns in 1790, for the Museum. 
They are adapted to a Jig in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion, book 3d, p. 28, composed by him from the sub- 
ject of an old air, in slow common time, called " The High- 
way to Edinburgh." Aird of Glasgow afterwards published 
the Jig in his Collection of Tunes, under the title of its parent 
melody, and it was again published by Neil Gow & Son, 
in their Second Collection, as " Lord Elcho's Favourite." 
Burns was mistaken in asserting, in the E-eliques, that Gow, 
or any of his family, claimed this melody as their own com- 
position ; or even that it had been notoriously taken from 
" The Mucking o' Geordie's Byre,"" for it is nothing more 
than the subject of the old air of " The High-way to Edin- 
burgh," thrown into treble time. 

In the original manuscript of the song now lying before 
me, Burns, in a note, says, " This song is to be sung to the 
air, called Lord Elcho's Favourite ; but do not put the name 
Lord ElcJw's Favourite above it ; let it just pass for the 
tune of the song, and a beautiful tune it is.'' 

This song, beginning " Gane is the day, and mirk''s the 

night," was written by Burns, with the exception of the chorus, 



which is old. In the ReUques, he says " The chorus of this 
is part of an old song, one stanza of which I recollect." 

Every day my wife tells me. 
That ale and brandy will ruin me ; 
But if gude liquor be my dead. 
This shall be written on my head— ■ 

O gudewtfe, emmt the lawin, 
The lawin, the lawin ; 
O gudewife, count the lawin, 
And bring a coggie mair- 

The tune to which the verses are adapted was furnished 
by Burns. It seems to have been partly borrowed from the 
air, called " The auld Man's Mare's dead." 


The words of this ballad, beginning " I'll sing of a 
whistle, a whistle of worth," were written by Burns in the 
year 1790, and transmitted, with the music, to Johnson for 
insertion in the Museum, alongst with the following particu- 
lars : 

" As the authentic pi'ose history of the Whistle is curious, 
I shall here give it. — In the train of Anne of Denmark, 
when she came to Scotland with our King James the VI. 
(1st May, 1590) there came over also a Danish gentleman, 
of gigantic stature and great prowess, and a matchless cham- 
pion of Bacchus. He had a little ebony whistle, which at 
the commencement of the orgies he laid on the table, and 
whoever was last able to blow it, every body else being dis- 
abled by the potency of the bottle, was to carry off the 
whistle as a trophy of victory. The Dane produced creden- 
tials of his victories, without a single defeat, at the courts of 
Copenhagen, Stockholm, Moscow, Warsaw, and several of 
the petty courts in Germany ; and challenged the Scots Bac- 
chanalians to the alternative of trying his prowess, or else 
of acknowledging their inferiority. After many overthrows 
on the part of the Scots, the Dane was encountered by Sir 
Robert Lawrie of Maxwelton, ancestor of the present worthy 


baronet of that name ; who, after three days and three nights 
hard contest, left the Scandinavian under the table, 

And hleiv on the Whistle his requiem shrill. 

Sir Walter, son to Sir Robert beft)re mentioned, afterwards 
lost the whistle to Walter Riddel of Glenriddel, who had 
married a sister of Sir Walter's. — On Friday, the 16th of Octo- 
ber, 1790, at Friars-Carse,the whistle was once more contended 
for, as related in the ballad, by the present Sir Robert Law- 
rie of Maxwelton ; Robert Riddel, Esq. of Glenriddel, lineal 
descendant and representative of Walter Riddel, who won 
the whistle, and in whose family it had continued ; and Alex- 
ander Ferguson, Esq. of Craigdarroch, likewise descended of 
the great Sir Robert ; which last gentleman carried off the 
hard-won honours of the field." 

The editor has been told, that Robert Riddel of Glenriddel, 
Esq. one of this jovial party, composed the tune to the ballad. 



This excellent song, beginning " By yon castle wa' at the 
close of the day," was written by Burns, and set to the old 
tune of " There are few good Fellows when Jamie's awa," 
inserted in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, book i. 
page 20. 

In the Reliques, Burns says, that this tune is sometimes 
called " There's few gude fellows when Willie's awa ;" but he 
had never been able to meet with any thing else of the song 
than the title. 

The Editor of this work has compared the original manu- 
script of the song, in Burns' own hand-writing, with the 
copy in the Museum, and finds it to be very correctly 

This humorous song was written by Burns, in 1790, ex- 
pressly for the Museum. Dr Blacklock had likewise written 


a. lone ballad to the same tune. At the foot of Burns' 
manuscript is the following note: " Set the tune to these 
words. Dr B's set of the tune is bad ; I here enclose a bet- 
ter. You may put Dr B's song after these verses, or you 
may leave it out, as you please. It has some merit, but it is 
miserably long." Johnson thought the Doctor"'s song too 
tedious for insertion, and therefore left it out. 

The tune is very old. There is a set of it in the sixth 
book of Oswald's Collection. In the third volume of the 
*' Pills'" the title of the song is quoted, " What shall a 
young Woman do ^vith an old Man," printed in 1703. 


This song, beginning " O, how can I be blythe and glad,"" 
is another unclaimed production of Burns. The bard's MSS. 
is now before me. He took the first line, however, and even 
some hints of his verses, from an old song in Herd's Collec- 
tion, vol. ii. page 1 , which begins " How can I be blythe or 
glad, or in my mind contented be." I have not been able to 
discover the tune to which the verses are adapted in any 
other collection prior to the Museum. Burns, however, 
never composed any words for a song unless the tune was 
quite familiar to him. 

The words of this old song, beginning " Late in an eve- 
ning forth I went," appear in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscel- 
lany 1724, and both the words and music in Thomson's 
Orpheus Caledonius in 1725, from whence they were copied 
into the Museum. Bishop Percy has likewise introduced 
this song into his Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, vol. 
iii. page 116, with the following note : — " The Auld Good- 
man, a Scottish Song. We have not been able to meet with 
a more ancient copy of this humorous old song than that 
printed in the Tea-Table Miscellany, &c. which seems to 
have admitted some corruptions." The worthy prelate, how- 


ever, has omitted to point out the passages which he con- 
ceived to have been vitiated. 

The fragment of this comical ditty was copied into the 
Museum from Herd's Collection, 1776, vol. ii. page 226, in 
which it is said to have been composed " on the late Duke of 
Argyle." The song, however, is of considerable antiquity, 
for the tune appears in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Compa- 
nion, book V. under the title of " O, as I was kiss'd the 
streen." The old title of the air was " Lumps o' Pudding." 
It appears in the Dancing-Master, printed in 1657. Gay 
selected this air for one of his songs in the Beggar's Opera, 
beginning " Thus I stand like the Turk," acted at London 
in 1728. 

This aneient and beautiful air, with the -fragment of the 
old ballad, beginning " She sat down below a thorn," were 
both transmitted by Burns to Johnson, for the Museum. 
The reader will find a very different ballad, under the same 
title, in Herd's Ancient and Modern Scottish Songs, begin- 
nins " There were three ladies in a ha'." Both ballads, how- 
ever, appear to have been sung to the same plaintive simple 
melody. Herd has another fragment of a ballad, beginning 
" And there she lean'd her back to a thorn," in his second 
volume ; but the verses are very imperfect. 

Burns says, " this song is altered from a Poem by Sir 
Robert Ayton, private secretary to Mary and Anne, Queens 
of Scotland. The poem is to be found in James Watson's 
Collection of Scots Poems. I do think that I have improv- 
ed the simplicity of the sentiments by giving them a Scots 
dress." — Reliques. 

Sir Robert Ay ton's verses appear in John Play ford's 

cccxxi.— I DO CONFESS Tiiou aut sae fair. 309 

Select Ayres, London, 1659, folio, under the title of a " Song 
to his forsaken Mistresse ; set to music by Mr Henry Lawes." 
They are also printed in Ellis's Specimens of the Early English 
Poets, vol. iii. page 325 ; and we shall now annex them, that 
the reader may be enabled to judge of Burns' improvements. 


I DO confess thou'rt smooth and fair. 

And I might have gone near to love thee. 

Had I not found the slightest prayer 

That lips could speak, had power to move thee : 

But I can let thee now alone. 

As worthy to be iov'd by none. 

I do confess thou'rt sweet, yet find 
Thee such an untln-ift of thy sweets ; 
Thy favours are but like the wind. 
That kisseth every thing it meets ; 
And since thou canst with more than one, 
Thou'rt worthy to be kiss'd by none. 

The morning rose, that untouch'd stands, 
Arm'd with her briars, how sweetly smells ! 
But pluck'd and strain'd through ruder hands. 
Her sweet no longer with her dwells ; 
But scent and beauty both are gone. 
And leaves fall from her, one by one. 


Such fate, ere long, will thee betide. 
When thou has handled been awhile ; 
Like sere flowers to be thrown aside. 
And I shall sigh while some will smile, 
To see thy love to every one. 
Hath brought thee to be Iov'd by none. 

The fine old tune, to which the Scottish version of the 
song by Burns is adapted, is called '• The Cuckoo." There 
was a Jacobite song to the same air, a fragment of which is 
inserted in Hogg's Jacobite Relics, vol. i. 

This old comic song, beginning " When I was a young- 
lad,"" appears in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, and the 
music is preserved in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Compa- 


nion, book i. and several other old collections. From these 
sources it was copied into the Museum. 


Burns says, that the first verse of this song, beginning 
" My soger laddie is over the sea," is old, and that the rest 
is by Ramsay. He also adds, " the tune seems to be the 
same with a slow air, called ' Jacky Hume's Lament ;' or 
* The HoUin Buss ;' or, ' Ken you what Meg o' the Mill has 
gotten ?' " — Reliques. 

Both the words and music of this song appear in Thom- 
son's Orpheus Caledonius, 1725, from whence they were 
copied into the Museum. The tune must therefore have 
been known long before that period by the name of " My 
Soldier Laddie," which is the title prefixed to it in Thomson's 

This song was reprinted in the sixth volume of Watt's 
Musical Miscellany in 1731. 

This song was written by Ramsay, and printed in the 
first volume of his Tea-Table Miscellany, in 1724, under 
the title of " The Cordial, to the tune of Wliere shall 
our Goodman ly^"" One stanza of the foolish old song runs 
thus : 

Where shall our goodman lie, 
. I O, where shall our goodman lie ; 
1 Where shaU our goodman lie, 
', Till he shute o'er the simmer ? 
; Tip amang the hen-bawks, 
; Up amang the hen-bawks, 
iUp amang the hen-bawks, 
lAmang the rotten timmer. 

This tune appears in Playford's Dancing Master, 1657, 
under the title of " The Red House ;" and Gay selected it 
for one of his songs in " Polly," beginning " I will have my 
humours," printed in 1729. 




Bt7A}TS says, " I have seen an interlude acted at a wedding 
to this tune, called < The Wooing of the Maiden.' These 
entertainments are now much worn out in this part of Scot- 
land. Two are still retained in Nithsdale, viz. * Silly puir 
auld Glenlae,' and this one. The Wooing of the Maiden. — 

Cromek, in his " Remains of Nithsdale and Galloway 
Song," printed at London in 1810, accuses Johnson, the 
original proprietor and publisher of the Museum, of ignor- 
ance., in rejecting two additional verses, which he, Cromek, 
has recovered and united to their fellows. These verses, 
however, are palpable forgeries, and are, besides, both shock- 
ingly indelicate and profane. 

With regard to this tune, although it appears in Oswald's 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, book 6th, printed in 1742, 
our musical readers will easily perceive, that it is the old air 
of " O'er the Hills and far away," changed from common into 
treble time. The antiquity of it is very questionable.* 

Both the words and music of this song; were transmitted 
by Burns to Johnson, for the Museum. Burns, in his Re- 
liques, mentions, that it is a very popular song in Ayrshire, 
It does not appear in any Collection prior to the Museum. 

The fragment of this ancient ballad, beginning " O where 
hae ye been. Lord Ronald, my son," with the beautiful air to 
which it is sung, were both recovered by Burns, and placed 
in the Museum. In the second volume of " The Minstrelsy 
of the Scottish Border," edited by Sir Walter Scott, we have 

• Galloway Tarn, the hero of this song, was Thomas Marshall, a stout and 
athletic Galwegian gypsey, equally celebrated for making songs, snufF-mills, and 
horn spoons. Some of his descendants, it is said, still inhabit Nithsdale and Gal- 

2 A 


a more full, though evidently a more modern, version of the 
ballad, under the title of " Lord Randal," which that inge- 
nious and justly celebrated author introduces to his readers 
with the following prefatory remarks. 

" There is a beautiful air to this old ballad. The hero is 
more generally termed Lord Ronald ; but I willingly follow 
the authority of an Ettrick Forest copy, for calling him 
Randal, because, though the circumstances are so very dif- 
ferent, I think it not impossible, that the ballad may have 
originally regarded the death of Thomas Randolph or Ran- 
dal, Earl of Murray, nephew to Robert Bruce, and governor 
of Scotland. This great warrior died at Musselburgh, 1332 
at the moment when his services were most necessary to his 
country, already threatened by an English army. For this 
sole reason, perhaps, our historians obstinately impute his 
death to poison. — See The Bruce, hook 20ih. Fordun re- 
peats, and Boece echoes, this story ; both of whom charge the 
murder on Edward III. But it is combated successfully by 
Lord Hailes, in his " Remarks on the History of Scotland."" 
There is a very similar song, in which, apparently to excite 
greater interest in the nursery, the handsome young hunter 
is exchanged for a little child, poisoned by his false step- 


O, WHERE hae ye been. Lord Randal, my son ? 
O, where hae ye been, my handsome young man ? 
I hae been to the wild wood ; mother, make my bed soon^ 
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down. 
Where gat ye your dinner, Lord Randal, my son ? 
Where gat ye your dinner, my handsome young man? 
I din'd wi' my true-love, mother, make my bed soon. 
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down. 

What gat ye to dinner. Lord Randal, my son ? 

What gat ye to dinner, my handsome young man ? 

I gat eels boil'd in broo ; mothei', make my bed soon. 

For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down. 

What became of your bloodhounds. Lord Randal, my son ? 

What became of your bloodhounds, my handsome young man? 

they sweU'd and they died ; mother, malce my bed soon. 

For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down. 


O, I fear you are poison'd. Lord Randal, my son ! 
O, I fear you are poison'd, my handsome young man ! 
O, yes ! I'm poison'd ; mother, make my bed soon. 
For I'm sick at the heart, and I fain wald lie down. 

Burns observes, that " this air, a very favourite one in 
Ayrshire, is evidently the original of Lochaber. In this 
manner, most of our finest more modern airs have had their 
origin. Some early minstrel, or musical shepherd, composed 
the simple original air ; which being picked up by the more 
learned musician, took the improved form it bears."— i?^- 
liques. His remarks are certainly just. 

Burns says, that this song, beginning " Comin thro' the 
Craigs of Kyle," is the composition of Jean Glover, a girl 
who was not only a whore but also a thief; and in one or 
other character had visited most of the correction-houses in 
the west. She was born, I believe, in Kilmarnock. I took 
the song down from her singing, as she was strolling through 
the country with a slight-of-hand blackguard." — Reliques. 
There are much older verses to this air than those in the 
Museum, but they are rather too loose for insertion. Stewart 
I^ewis, a minor Scots poet, likewise wrote some verses to the 
same air, which were published, along with his poems, about 
twenty years ago. The tune was published as a reel in 
Bremner's Collection, about the year 1764. 


This song was written by Burns, in 1790, for the Mu- 
seum. In his manuscript, he directs Mr Clarke to set the 
words to tlae tune of " CornwaUis's Lament for Colonel 
Muirhead."" This is a modern air, by Mr M. S. 


This song, beginning " All hail to thee thou bawmy bud," 
was written by one Johnson, a joiner, in the neighbourhood 


of Belfast. The tune is evidently the progenitor of the air 
called " Jocky's Gray Breeks." It indeed appears, under the 
title of " Jocky's Gray Breeches," in Oswald's second volume, 
published in 1742. I observe that Burns has altered the 
spelling of a few words in the author's manuscript, to give 
this song a little more sprinkling of the Scottish language. 

This song was written by Burns for the Museum. In 
his Reliques, he says, " This tune is by Oswald. The song 
alludes to a part of my private history, which it is of no con- 
sequence to the world to know." — Reliques. The reader, on 
turning to the notes on Song No 117, entitled " The High- 
land Lassie," will have no difficulty in understanding that 
part of the bard's private history to which he alludes. The 
tune, under the title of " Phebe," by Mr Oswald^ was pub- 
lished in his fourth volume, in 1742. 


This song, beginning '* I hae been at Crookieden," was 
patched up by Burns from the fragments of an old Jacobite 
effusion. In the copy transmitted to Johnson, the third line 
originally stood, " There I saw some folk I ken." Burns, I 
observe, has drawn his pen through this line, and written 
above it, " Viewing Willie and his men." 

In the Reliques, our bard, alluding to the tune of the 
Highland laddie, says " As this was a favourite theme with 
our later Scottish muses, there are several airs and songs 
of that name. That which I take to be the oldest, is 
to be found in the Musical Museum, beginning ' I hae 
been at Crookieden' (a vulgar cant name for hell.) One 
reason for my thinking so is, that Oswald has it in his 
Collection by the name of ' The Auld Highland Laddie.' 
It is also known by the name of Jinglan Johnie^ wliich is a 
well-known song of four or five stanzas, and seems to be an 
earlier song than Jacobite times. As a proof of this, it is 


little known to the peasantry by the name of < Highland 
Laddie,' while eveiy body knows ' Jinglan Johnie.' The 
song begins, 

" Jinglan John, the meicMe man, 

He met wi a lass ivas hlythe and bonnie." — Reliques. 

It is now, perhaps, impossible to determine whether Burns 
may, or may not, be right respecting the seniority of this 
tune to its other namesakes. But in Gow's Repository, part 
second, there is an air called " The Original Highland 
Laddie, or the Quickstep of the gallant 42d Regiment, as 
performed when that regiment was reviewed by his Majesty 
at Ashford, 7th May, 1802;" and this very tune appears in 
Play ford's Dancing Master, published at London in 1657, 
under the title of " Cockle-Shells." From this circumstance 
it would appear, that our poetical politicians, in after times, 
generally adapted their Jacobite verses to such airs as were 
well known and much esteemed at the time, without taking 
the trouble of composing new tunes to the words. It is cu- 
rious to remark, that the same air which was played before 
his Majesty in 1802, must have been well known about two 
hundred years before that period, when the Stewart family 
succeeded to the imperial throne of Britain. 

Signor Pasquali composed a new tune to the song, begin- 
ning " The Lowland lads think they are fine," written by 
Ramsay. This tune appears in Oswald's first book, under 
the title of " The Highland Lassie." The words and air 
were afterwards reprinted in " The Muses Delight," at Liver- 
pool, in 1754. 

In the Reliques, Burns says, these verses were originally 
Enghsh, and that he gave them their Scotch dress. The 
tune was composed by Oswald, and inserted in his Cale- 
donian Pocket Companion, bookiv. p. 30, published in 1742 
under the title of " The Maid's Complaint " It is certam y 
one of the finest Scottish airs that Oswald ever composed. 



This old tune is mentioned by Colonel Cleland in his 

mock poem on the " Highland Host," written in 1697. 

Trumpets sounded, sheens were glancing, 
Some were Donald Couper dancing. 

But it was current in England long before this period, as 
it appears in Play ford's Dancing Master in 1 657, under the 
title of Daniel Cooper. Tom Durfey, or some of his Grub- 
street brethren, wrote an execrable and indecent ballad to this 
tune, which is inserted in the " Pills to Purge Melancholy, 
vol. V. anno. 1719," entitled " Good honest Trooper take 
warning by Donald Cooper. To the tune of Daniel Coo- 

David Herd has preserved the following fragment of the 
old song ; upon comparing which with the copy inserted in 
the Museum, the reader will be enabled to discover the hu^ 
morous touches it has received from the pen of Burns. 

Donald Couper and his man. 
They've gane to the fair ; 
They've gain to court a bonny lass. 
But fint a ane was there: 
But he has gotten an auld wife. 
And she's come hirpling hame ; 
And she's fa'n o'er the buffet-stool. 
And brake her rumple-bane. 
Sing, hey Donald, how Donald, 
Hey Donald Couper ; 
He's gane awa to court a vnfe, 
And he's come hame without her. 

The tune in the Museum has been considerably altered and 
modernized. The following is a genuine copy : 


E^gE^l^g^ gl^lp^^ l^Eg^ 








This song, beginning " Forbear, gentle youth, to pursue 
me in vain," is another production of the venerable Dr Black- 
lock. I believe the tune is his likewise. His amanuensis 
brought both the words and music to Johnson, 


The verses in the Museum, beginning " O saw ye my 
dearie, my Eppie MacNab," were written by Burns as a 
substitute for the old song, which, he justly observes, had 
more wit than decency. The modern verses, in the poet's 
own hand-writing, are now lying before me. The tune is 
preserved in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, book 
vi. under the title of " Apple M'Nabb." 


This tune, in old times, was known by the name of " Lass, 

an I come near thee," which was the first line of the chorus 

of a foolish old song. 

Lass, an 1 come near thee. 
Lass, an I come near thee, 
I'll gar a' your ribbatis reel. 
Lass, an I come near thee. 

The verses adapted to this tune in the Museum were writ- 
ten by Burns on purpose for that work. Mr Cromek says, 
that Mr Gilbert Burns told him, " this song was suggested 
to his brother by the ' Auld Man's Address to the Wi- 
dow,' printed in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, which the 
poet first heard sung, before he had seen that Collection, by 
Jean Wilson, a silly old widow-woman, then living at Tar- 
bolton, remarkable for the simplicity and nalvette of her cha- 
racter and for singing old Scots songs with a peculiar energy 
and earnestness of manner. Having outlived her family, she 
still retained the form of family-worship ; and before she 
sung a hymn, she would gravely give out the first hne of the 
verse, as if sliQ had a numerous audience r-^Reliques. 


The Auld Man's Address, above alluded to in Ramsay's 
Tea-Table Miscellany, is called " The Auld Man's Best 
Argument," to the tune of " Widow, are ye wakin ?" The 
words and music are inserted in the fifth volume of the Mu- 
seum, p. 444. The song begins, " Wha is that at my cham- 
ber door ?" 


The fine old Scottish tune of " Had awa frae me, Do- 
nald," appears in Playford's Dancing Master^ which was 
published, 1657, under the title of " Welcome home. Old 
Rowley." The tune in the Museum, No 338, as well as 
the words, are modernized from the old song. To enable 
the reader to compare the ancient air with its modern repre- 
sentatives, it is here annexed : — 








This tune, with considerable embellishments, was printed 
in the Orpheus Caledonius, in 1725. 



New Set. 

This is the same air, with the embellishments introduced 
by the late Mr P. Urbani in singing the song at the concerts 
in Edinburgh. This gentleman published at Edinburgh, in 
two folio volumes, " A Select Collection of Original Scottish 
Airs for the Voice, with introductory and concluding Sym- 
phonies and Accompaniments for the Piano-Forte, Violin, and 
Violoncello," a work of great merit. In the preface he in- 
forms us, that having been, struck with the elegant simpli- 
city of the original Scots Melodies, he applied himself for 


several years, in attending to the manner of the best Scottish 
singers ; and having attached himself to that which was ge- 
nerally allowed to be the best, he flattered himself that he 
had acquired the true national taste. He sung, during a pe- 
riod of four years, the Scots airs in the concerts of the Har^ 
monkal Society of Edinburgh, and for three years in the 
concerts in Glasgow. In both places he received such marks 
of universal applause, as convinced him that his method of 
singing was approved by the best judges. — See his adver- 
tisement prefixed to the work. 

The writer of this article knew Urbani intimately. He 
was an excellent singer, and his knowledge of Counterpoint 
was very masterly and profound. In 1802, he and the late 
Mr Sybold, the composer and harp-player, engaged a nume- 
rous and respectable band of vocal and instrumental per- 
formers from various parts of the kingdom, that the inhabi- 
tants of Edinburgh and Glasgow might be gratified with 
hearing some of the best Oratorios of Handel, &c. This con- 
cern, although deserving of encouragement, did not succeed, 
and the affairs of both contractors were ruined. Sybold died 
that spring of a broken heart, and poor Urbani, after strug- 
gling with his misfortunes for some time in Edinburgh, was 
at length induced to settle in Ireland, where he continued 
to the period of his death, in 1816. 

This elegant song is the composition of Miss Cranston, 
now married to Dugald Stewart, Esq. formerly Professor of 
Moral Philosophy in the University of Edinburgh. Burns 
acquaints us, that the song wanted four lines to make all the 
stanzas suit the music, and that he added the first four lines 
of the last stanza. — Reliques. The words are adapted to an 
air taken from Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, 
book iv. page 8, entitled " Anthy, the lovely ;" but it is not 
a Scottish melody. It is the composition of Mr John Bar- 
ret of London, organist, a pupil of Dr Blow, M'ho set 


this air to tlie English song of " lanthe, the lovely," print- 
ed in the fourth volume of the « Pills," in 1707. Gay 
selected this tune for one of his songs iu the Beggar's Opera, 
beginning " When he holds up his hands arraigned for life," 
acted at London in 1728. 


These verses, beginning " Bonie wee thing, canie wee 
thing,"" were composed by Burns, as he informs us, on his 
little idol, the charming lovely Davies. — Reliques. The 
words are adapted to the tune of " The bonie wee Thing," 
in Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, book ym..-—See 
notes on Song No 349, entitled " Lovely Davies." 


Mr CuoMEK says that the words of this song were written 
by Mrs Murray, spouse of Dr Murray, Bath. In the col- 
lections of Thomson, Urbani, &c. they are attributed to the 
pen of Mrs Grant of Carron. There may be two different 
editions of this song, which is adapted to the old tune, called 
" The Ruffian's Rant." " Roy's Wife" is the modern name 
of the air. 

Burns, in a letter to Mr Thomson, dated Sept. 1793, and 
printed in the fourth volume of Dr Currie's edition of his 
works, says, " I have the original words of a song for the 
last air, (Roy's Wife) in the hand-writing of the lady who 
composed it ; and they are superior to any edition of the 
song which the public has yet seen." In another letter from 
the bard to the same gentleman, dated ] 9th November, 1 794, 
and published in the same work, he says " Since yesterday's 
penmanship, I have framed a couple of English stanzas, by 
way of an English song, to Roy's Wife. You will allow me, 
that, in this instance, ray English corresponds in sentiment 
with the Scottish." The reader will find the verses inserted 
in the notes on Song No 156, beginning " Can'st thou leave 
me thus, my Katy V 


Burns continues, " Well ! I think this, to be done in two 
or three turns across my room and with two or three pinch- 
es of Irish blackguard, is not so far amiss. You see I am 
determined to have my quantum of applause from some 
body." — See his Works, vol. iv. 

Dr Currie, in a note to the above song, says, " To this 
address, in the character of a forsaken lover, a reply was 
found on the part of the lady among the MSS. of our bard, 
evidently in a female hand-writing, (which is doubtless that 
referred to in Burns's letter of September, 1793.) The 
temptation to give it to the public is irresistible ; and if, in 
so doing, oifence should be given to the fair authoress, the 
beauty of her verses must plead our excuse." The reader 
will likewise find the reply by the lady, in the notes to the 
same song. No 156. It begins, " Stay, my Willie, yet be- 
lieve me." 

There appears to be some obscurity in Dr Currie's ac- 
count. The reader will observe, that Burns, in his letter, 
dated September 1793, says, he had the lady's verses of 
the song at that time in his possession. But Burns's English 
address was not composed till 19th November 1794, up- 
wards of a year thereafter. Unless, therefore, we suppose 
that his verses were originally written in the Scottish dialect, 
and that he subsequently gave them an English dress, it ap- 
pears impossible that the lady's verses can be considered as 
a reply to a song which was not then in existence. 

The words of this song, as the editor has been informed, 
were written for the Museum by Dr Blacklock. The manu- 
script, however, must have been either abstracted or lost, as 
it is not now among the original materials furnished to John- 
son for his fourth volume. The verses, beginning " My 
hero, my hero, my beauteous and brave," are adapted to the 
tune of " Earl Douglas's Lament," in Oswald's Caledonian 
Pocket Companion, book 7th, page 30. This beautiful 
tune, however, if it be not the progenitor of the melodies of 


" When I hae a sixpence under my thumb — Rohidh donna 
Gorrach" &c. &c. is evidently nearly connected with them. 
The song appears to have been written subsequent to the 
appearance of Home's celebrated tragedy of Douglas, in 
which Lady Randolph is one of the principal characters. 

The words of this song are taken from Ramsay's Tea- 
Tdble Miscellany^ 1724, with the letters J. W. Q. subjoined 
to it. The editor has not yet learned who is the author. The 
verses are adapted to the air of " Auld Sir Simon the King," 
according to the direction of their author. This tune is very 
old. It appears in Playford's Dancing Master, in 1657 ; 
in The Pills to Purge Melancholy, it frequently occurs with 
one strain only, which undoubtedly was the original simple 
melody. In Playford's second part of " Musick's Hand- 
maid," published in 1689, the melody is published with vari- 
ations for the Virginals, under the title of " Old Simon." It 
is, perhaps, impossible to decide whether the tune is origin- 
ally Scottish or English, for it has been a favourite in both 
countries past the memory of man. ' 

Burns says, " This tune is originally from the Highlands, 
I have heard a Gaelic song to it, which I was told was very 
clever, but not by any means a lady's song." — Reliques. 
The musical reader will easily observe, that the second strain 
of this Highland tune is almost note for note the same with 
the second part of the air of " Saw ye Johnie comin', quo' 
she." It is, however, a fine tune for all that, and was sent 
by Burns to Mr Johnson, alongst with the pretty verses 
adapted to it; which, it is believed, are the composition of our 


This old Scots Song had found its way into England 
about the year 1700 ; for it appears in the second volume of 


The Pills to Purge Melancholy, printed that year. Henry 

Playford, the editor and publisher of the three first volumes 

of that work, had not however known the original tune, as he 

directs it to be sung to the air called " Cold and Raw ;" and 

to make the verses suit this tune, he has altered some of the 

words, as well as the terminating letter O into A^ at the end 

of every alternate line, thus : 

What tho' I am a country lass, 
A lofty mind I bear a ; 
I think myself as good as those 
That gay apparel wear a. 

This alteration renders the song perfectly ludicrous, and 
opposite to the intention of the old homely minstrel who com- 
posed it. The song, however, is fortunately preserved in the 
Tea-Table Miscellany, and directed to be sung " to its ain 
tune." Thomson, in his Orpheus Caledonius, 1725, has 
adapted the verses to a tune not unlike, and probably the 
original melody, which Carey afterwards altered a little to 
suit his song of Sally in our Alley. The fine original air, of 
one simple strain, however, was recovered by Burns, and 
transmitted to Johnson ; and the verses were at last adapted 
to their ain tune in the Museum. 

Burns likewise sent the rude fragment of the old ballad, 
called " Geordie," beginning " There was a battle in the 
north," which he had heard sung to the same tune. 
This ballad seems to relate to George Earl of Huntly, 
■who was sent on an expedition to Shetland, in 1554, by the 
Queen Regent of Scotland to seize a certain person who had 
proved offensive to her. He, however, returned without be- 
ing successful. Upon this he was incarcerated, and his titles 
and estates were forfeited. He was afterwards liberated and 
restored to his dignities, and chosen to be one of the privy ' 
counsel to Queen Mary. — See Holinshead's Scottish Chronicle. 


This song was written by Burns, in 1790, on purpose for 


the Museum. In his original manuscript, now before me, 
he directs it to be set to the tune of " Rory DalFs Port," in 
Oswald's Caledonian Pocket Companion, book viii. This 
has accordingly been done by the editor, and hi& friend, Mr 

The first couplet of this song had probably been suggest- 
ed to our bard, on hearing the introductory stanza of the 
English song, which begins — 

One kind kiss before we partj 
Drop a tear, and bid adieu. 


This beautiful Gaelic melody was obtained by Burns du- 
ring his excursion in the north of Scotland, in the year 1787. 
It is entitled Riiin m' eudail mo mhealladh, i. e. " My dear 
did deceive me." The verses in the Museum were likewise 
transmitted by Burns. They are said to be a correct Scottish 
metrical version of the Gaehc song, from an English transla- 
tion communicated to Burns with the original air. 

A modern and a much inferior set of this tune has lately 
(1816) appeared in Eraser's Collection of Original Highland 
Airs, which, he says, but for him, would in all probability 
have perished with his life. 


This is another production of Burns, in compliment to the 
young lady (Miss Davies) formerly noticed, whose personal 
and mental accomplishments have more than once been the 
theme of our bard's poetical encomiums. — See notes on Song 
341, entitled " The bonnie wee Thing-."' In his original ma- 
nuscript, I observe that the 9th line began ^' Ilk eye she 
cheers," which he afterwards altered to " Each eye it cheers ;" 
and in the twenty-second line, the word humble is struck out, 
and willing is substituted. The verses, beginning " O how 
shall I unskilfu' try," were adapted to the tune called " Miss 
Miiir^'' at his own request. 


The tune and title of this song were taken from Oswald's 
Caledonian Pocket Companion, book viii. The humorous 
verses were supplied by Bui-ns, on purpose for the Museum. 
The bard has only altered one word in his original manu- 
script, viz. suck, at the end of the third line of the second 
stanza, is scored through with his pen, and souk substituted 
as being more euphonical. 


This song was written by Burns on purpose for the Mu- 
seum. The words are adapted to the old air, called " When 
the King came o'er the Water," which was the title of a song 
composed on the battle, fought on the banks of the River 
Boyne in Ireland, between William III. and his father-in- 
law, James II. in 1690. King James was totally, defeated, 
and afterwards retired to France, where he died in 1710. 

Johnson has erroneously given the above air the name of 
*' Come kiss with me, come clap with me," which is quite a 
different and a much older tune. It originally consisted of 
one strain, and was printed in this simple manner even so late 
as 1733, in Thomson's Orpheus Caledonius, edition second. 


^hbIi^hbI Imiiibii'i ml 


In Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany, one of the songs, be- 
ginning " My Jocky blyth for what thou'st done," is directed 
to be sung to this lively old air. Oswald added the second 
strain to iL—See notes on Song No 4*15. 



A second strain being afterwards added to it, and adapted 
to some licentious verses, it became known by the name of 
*' Had I the wyte, she bade me." — See Oswald's Caledonian 
Pocket Companion^ hook mi. page 20. It is now known by 
the name of « The Bob of Fettercairn."" — See Gow's Third 
Collection of Reels, Strathspeys, S^c. 

This old tune is taken from Oswald's Caledonian Pocket 
Companion. It was formerly adapted to some trifling verses, 

I HAE a wife o' my awn, 
I'll be haddin' to naebody J 
I hae a pat and a pan, 
I'll borrow frae naebody. 

The verses in the Museum were written for that work by 
Bums, a few days after his marriage. " At this period (says 
Dr Currie) sentiments of independence buoyed up his mind, 
pictures of domestic content and peace rose on his imagina- 
tion, and a few days passed away, as he himself informs us, 
the most tranquil, if not the happiest, he had ever experi- 
enced." In this situation he expressed his feelings in the 
vigorous and energetic lines inserted in the Museum, formed 
on the model of the old ballad. 



The fragment of this ancient ditty, which is preserved in 
Herd's Collection, required some burnishing before it could 
be presented to the subscribers for the Museum. Burns un- 
dertook to make it passable, and, considering the difficulties 
he had to encounter, it must be admitted, that he has per- 
formed the task with great skill and dexterity. The musical 
reader will scarcely require to be informed, that this spirited 
air, of one simple strain, is among the oldest of our Scottish 
melodies. It is preserved in the first book of Oswald's Cale- 
donian Pocket Companion, with some of his own variations 


upon the air. It also appears in Mrs Crockat's Manuscript 
Book of Tunes, dated 1709. 


This fragment of a humorous old Scottish ballad, with 
its original melody, was communicated by Herd. The words 
were previously printed in the second volume of his Collec- 
tion in 1776. They were slightly retouched by Burns for 
the Museum. 


This comic song, the manuscript of which is before me, 
was written by Burns on purpose for the Museum. The 
subject of the song had a real origin : A young girl having 
been left some property by a near relation, and at her own dis- 
posal on her attaining majority, was pressed by her relations 
to marry an old rich booby. Her affections, however, had 
previously been engaged by a young man, to whom she had 
pledged her troth when she should become of age, and she 
of course obstinately rejected the solicitations of her friends 
to any other match. Burns represents the lady addressing 
her youthful lover in the language of constancy and affection. 

The verses are adapted to an old tune, called The Mou- 
diewart. In the Reliques, Burns says, " this song is mine."