Robert Burns

Robert Burns, Nasmyth Portrait


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Robert Burns's Publications

Title Publication Date Publisher Edition Other Editions Editor Collaborator Patron Subscription Description Key Subscribers Pages Call Number Dialect Language Digitized or Digital Editions Additional Notes
The Works and Life of Burns James Cochrane, John Macrone Allan Cunningham HathiTrust
Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect 1786 John Wilson 1
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Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect
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"This edition, however, was re-set and reprinted more or less simultaneously, since it was over-subscribed. 3,000 copies in all were published. After the first batch had been printed, the type had to be re-set. An error crept into a line in the 'Address to a Haggis', where by "Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware", became "Auld Scotland wants nae stinking ware". The second form of the 1787 edition has thus become known as the 'Stinking Burns'. The price to subscribers was 5 s. to other purchasers 6. As with the Kilmarnock Edition, Burns assumed all personal responsibility." (
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Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect, Greatly Enlarged with New Poems
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Reissued in 1794
Subscribers list for Kilmarnock edition available here: Burns raised 1,500 subscribers for the first Edinburgh edition Scots National Library of Scotland
The Scots Musical Museum 1787 to 1803 Johnson & Co. National Library of Scotland

Burns contributed largely to the work, and Stephen Clarke prepared the arrangements of most of the airs. ["The volumes of the Musical museum, as originally published, were 'Humbly dedicated to the Catch Club, instituted at Edinburgh 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.'"--Laing's pref., to 1839 ed., v. 1, p. ii, foot-note]. (National Library of Scotland)

"The first volume was published in 1787 and included three songs by Burns. He contributed 40 songs to volume 2, and would end up responsible for about a third of the 600 songs in the whole collection as well as making a considerable editorial contribution. The final volume was published in 1803.

As well as collecting old songs, Burns wrote new words to old tunes, and many of the songs now attributed to Burns have older roots. Songs in the collection include Auld Lang Syne, Lord Ronald, my Son (better known as Lord Randal) and My love is like a Red, Red Rose. Burns' songs include The Battle of Sherramuir, Scots Wha Hae, Green Grow the Rashes, Flow Gently Sweet Afton, Ye Banks and Braes of Bonnie Doon, Ae Fond Kiss, The Winter it is Past, Comin' Thro the Rye and John Anderson, My Jo.

The collection became popular internationally, and songs and tunes were arranged by composers such as Joseph Haydn and Ludwig van Beethoven." (Wikipedia)

A Select Collection of Original Scottish Airs for the Voice 1793 to 1841 George Thomson Scots

Personal Map


Source Relationship Type Target Description View
Thomas Mounsey Cunningham influenced by Robert Burns

Cunningham wrote ‘The Hills o' Gallowa’, one of his most popular songs, which has been attributed by some to Burns

George Bruce influenced by Robert Burns

Bruce's 1886, Poems and Songs, "displays his knowledge of the Scots language and his admiration for Robert Burns. He later became poet laureate of the St Andrews Burns Club." (Fife Today)

James Hogg read, influenced by Robert Burns

"For much of his life Hogg believed that he was born on 25 January 1772. He took great pride in sharing the birthday of Robert Burns; indeed there is much evidence that he saw his life's work in terms of being Burns's successor. However, the parish register of Ettrick records Hogg's baptism at Ettrick church on 9 December 1770, a fact that he discovered with disappointment during his later years" (ODNB).

"After the failure of the projected move to Harris in 1804, Hogg obtained work as a shepherd in Dumfriesshire, in south-west Scotland, an area in which Burns had spent the final years of his life. Indeed, while living in Dumfriesshire, Hogg made the acquaintance of Jean Armour, Burns's widow" (ODNB).

"Like Burns, Hogg questioned and subverted aspects of the Scottish Enlightenment, and created a space in which the allegedly ‘marginal’ and ‘primitive’ culture of the old Scottish peasantry could speak with eloquence and power. Like Burns, Macpherson, and Scott, Hogg made a distinctive Scottish contribution to European Romanticism." (ODNB)

Robert Bloomfield read, influenced by Robert Burns

Over the years Bloomfield developed a prodigious memory for poetry and could recite any passage from The Seasons or Thomson's The Castle of Indolence, as well as large swathes of Burns. (ODNB)

Janet Little addressed writing to Robert Burns View
Joseph Skipsey read, wrote about Robert Burns

Skipsey put together editions of famous poets including Burns for Sir Walter Scott's Canterbury series

Robert Sewell addressed writing to Robert Burns

Sewell pub. An Essay in Rhyme, in two parts (Halsted: M. King, 1834), which contains "To Burns"

Robert Tannahill influenced by, addressed writing to Robert Burns

Tannahill wrote dialect poems inspired by Burns from approximately 1800-1810. He addressed several odes in Burns' memory for Burns Suppers, and helped found and was the first secretary of the Paisley Burns Club.