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[No. 207. Tibbie Dunbar. Tune: Johnny McGill.

O wilt thou go wi' me, sweet Tibbie Dunbar, &c.] 'This tune is said to be the composition of John McGill, fiddler in Girvan; who called it after his own name.'

[No. 210. The Highland Character.

In the garb of old Gaul, with the fire of old Rome, &c.] 'This tune was the composition of Gen. Reid and called by him The Highland, or 42a Regiment's March. The words are by Sir Harry Erskine.'


[No. 226.

The Gaberlunzie man.

The pawky auld carl came o'er the lea, &c.]

'The Gaberlunzie man is supposed to commemorate an intrigue of James the Vth, Mr Callander of Craigforth, published some years ago, an edition of Christ's kirk on the Green, and The Gaberlunzie man, with notes critical and historical. James the Vth is said to have been fond of Gosford, in Aberlady Parish, and that it was suspected by his contemporaries, that in his frequent excursions to that part of the country he had other purposes in view besides golfing and archery. Three favourite ladies, Sandilands, Weir, and Oliphant; (one of them resided at Gosford, and the others in the neighbourhood), were occasionally visited by their royal and gallant admirer, which occasioned the following satirical advice to his Majesty from Sir David Lindsay of the Mount, Lord Lyon :Sow not your seed on Sandylands, Spend not your strength in Weir; And ride not on an Elephant

For spoiling o' your gear. R. R.'

[No. 252. Donald and Flora.

When merry hearts were gay, &c.]

'This is one of those fine Gallick tunes, preserved from time immemorial in the Hebrides; they seem to be the

1 These two words in italic are in Burns's handwriting.

ground-work of many of our finest pastoral Scots tunes, which with me is a strong argument for the Scots Musick being the composition of our ancient Bards, before they left off the use of the harp. Mr McDonald of Kilmore has published a number of those ancient airs. The words of this song were written to commemorate the unfortunate expedition of General Burgoyne, in America, in 1777''

[No. 263. Awa', Whigs, awa', &c.]

'Colville's Scottish Hudibras is well worth reading. It gives a very ludicrous picture of the Covenanters. R. R.'

[No. 266. The jolly beggar.

There was a jolly beggar, and a-begging he was bound, &c.]

'According to tradition the words of this song were made to Commemorate an intrigue that King James the Fifth had with a young lady. I have heard a daughter of several families named, but never could see good reason for exactly fixing upon the identical one. It has been said that both this and the Gaberlunzie man were his own compositions, as well as the first canto of Christ's kirk on the green. R. R.'

[No. 271. A mother's lament for the death of her son. Finlayston House.

Tune :

Fate gave the word, the arrow sped, &c.]

'This most beautiful tune is (I think) the happiest composition of that bard-born genius John Riddell (of the family of Glencarnock) at Ayr. The words equal the Tune, and were composed by Mr Burns, to commemorate the much lamented and very premature death of James Ferguson Esq. jun' of Craig Darroch. He was a young man of the greatest hopes, and every year returned home from the University of Glasgow laden with prizes fairly won and with the most flattering letters from the different Professors he attended, to his poor father. But alas! all sublunary joys are fleeting,

he was suddenly taken off when in the high road to fame, honor and riches, and left a most disconsolate family to lament his loss. R. R.'

[No. 272.

The White Cockade.

My love was born in Aberdeen, &c.]

'In the year 1745 the rebel army wore white cockades in their hats and bonnets-on that account this Jacobite air got the name of The White Cockade:

[No. 292. Killiecrankie.

Whare hae ye been sae braw, lad! &c.]

'The battle of Killiecrankie was the last stand made by the Clanns for James, after his abdication. Here the gallant Lord Dundee fell in the moment of victory, and with him fell the hopes of the party. General M Kay, when he found the Highlanders did not pursue his flying army, said "Dundee must be killed or he never would have overlooked this advantage." A great stone marks the spot where Dundee fell.'

[No. 296. Tam Glen.

My heart is a breaking, dear Tittie, &c.]

'This droll and expressive description of the feelings of a love-sick country girl is the composition of my much esteemed friend Mr Burns to the old tune of Mall Roe. In this conception he has given the full force that the Scottish language (in compositions of this sort) admits of

I cannot help here observing that this ballad, Tam O Shanter, The Cottar's Saturday Night, Hallowe'en, The Whistle, and many others, are more descriptive of Caledonia and Scottish manners than any other compositions whatever. R. R.'


[No. 325. Galloway Tam.

[No. 332. Bonie laddie, Highland laddie.

O, Galloway Tam came here to woo,


'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 Scotland. Two are still retained in Nithsdale, viz. :-1 Jilly pure auld Glenae, and this one The Wooing of the Maiden. R. R.'

I hae been at Crookieden, &c.]

[No. 347. Rory Dall's Port.

'This Jacobite song was written as a satyre on William Augustus Duke of Cumberland.' [The rest of the interleaf has been cut off and is missing. Ed.]

[No. 364. Nithsdall's welcome hame.

Ae fond kiss, and then we sever,


'Rory Dall was a famous harper and composer in the Highlands. Many of his compositions are handed down and among the rest this Tune, of which I have seen a set for the harp with all the variations and runnings so well adapted for that ancient instrument. R. R.'

1 Qy. 'Silly.'

The noble Maxwel's and their powers, &c.]

'The house of Terreagles had long been deserted by the family of Nithsdale when in 1787 Mr Constable determined to rebuild that ancient house and family seat. In 1788 I composed this tune, and imparting to my friend Mr Burns the name I meant to give it, he composed for the Tune the words here inserted.

R. R.'


SEVENTEEN Interleaves which faced the following songs have been cut out or are now missing. Those Songs marked * were written for, or contributed by Burns to, the Scots Musical Museum. The three Notes on Nos. 117, 224, and 284, printed by Cromek, obviously cannot be verified. There is no record for the rest of the missing interleaves.

No. 77. *Green grows the rashes, O, &c.

No. 78. *Young Peggy blooms our boniest lass, &c.

No. 102. Tranent-muir. [The leaf was probably spoiled and destroyed, for the Note on this song was inserted by Burns on the following interleaf, for which see supra, p. 23.] No. 117. *The Highland lassie, O.

Nae gentle dames, tho' ne'er sae fair, &c.

'This was a composition of mine in very early life, before I was known at all in the world. My Highland lassie was a warm-hearted, charming young creature as ever blessed a man with generous love. After a pretty long tract of the most ardent reciprocal attachment, 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 few days, before I could even hear of her illness' (Cromek's Reliques, p. 237).

No. 118. *The Northern lass.

No. 129.

Tho' cruel fate should bid us part, &c.
Stay, my charmer, can you leave me? &c.


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