The Queen's Wake: A Legendary Poem

Publication Type: 
Published poetry collection
Author: 
Author Role: 
Author
Publication Date: 
1813
Publication Notes: 
Printed by Andrew Balfour, For George Goldie, 34. Prince's Street, Edinburgh; and Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown, London
Locations: 
Edition: 
2
Number of Editions: 
3
Other Editions: 
Edition: 
3
Publication Date: 
1814
Other Information: 
"Contains important revisions" (ODNB)

This book-length narrative poem tells of the return of Mary, queen of Scots, to Scotland after her long sojourn in France. To welcome the young queen a poetic competition—described by Hogg as a ‘wake’—is held at Holyrood Palace among the minstrels of Scotland. The poem tells the story of this event, interspersed with the songs sung by the minstrels. The Queen's Wake was immediately recognized as a major achievement, with spice added by the circumstances of Hogg's background and upbringing. Indeed, George Goldie, the publisher of the poem, assured readers in the second edition (1813) that the work was ‘really and truly the production of James Hogg, a common shepherd, bred among the mountains of Ettrick Forest, who went to service when only seven years of age; and since that period has never received any education whatever’ (p. vi). (ODNB)

Major Event: 
Yes