Complete Songs Of Robert Burns - online book

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382                           HISTORICAL NOTES
No. 94. Mark yonder pomp of costly fashion. Currie, Works, 1800, iv. 2}). 'Tune, Deil tak the wars' Scotish Airs, 1805, xjj. The MS. is in the Thomson collection. Another of the English songs concerning which Burns wrote to Thomson that he took credit to himself for answering orders with the punctuality of a tailor making a suit of clothes. For the tune, see No. So.
No. 95. Ah, Chloris,sinoo it may not be. Aldine edition, 1839. 'Tune, Major Graham' It may be assumed that this was written in 1794. It was originally printed from the poet's MS. For the tune, see No. ij2.
No. 96. I see a form, I see a face. Thomson's Scotish Airs, 1799, j6. ' Written for this work by Robert Burns. Air, This is no my ain house' The MS . is in the Thomson collection. The first sketch made in July, and finished in August, 1795. Burns remarked that the rhythm of the music puzzled him a good deal, and he thought that changing the first or chorus part would have a good effect.
The tune This is no my ain house, or Abbeyhills rant, is said to be in Blaikie's MS., 1692; Orpheus Caledonius, 1733, No. ^2 with words; Aird's Airs, 1782, ii. No. 176, and Caledonian Pocket Companion, xi. 8. Verses are marked to be sung to the tune in Ramsay's Miscellany', 1725 ; and Herd's Scots Songs, 1769,190. Thomson is responsible for making considerable variations in the melody.
No. 97. O, bonie was yon rosy brier. Currie, Works, 1800, iv. 242, entitled ' Scottish Song'; Thomson's Scotish Airs, 1801, iij. The MS. is in the Thomson collection. Written for Stephen Clarke, who proposed to set it to an original melody for publication in sheet form. The arrangement was not carried through, and Burns instructed Thomson to print his song with the tune J wish my love were in a mire. Thomson pnblished it with quite a different melody. Of 1 wish my love were in a mire, That I 'may pit her out again, Burns says in the Interleaved Museum: ' I never heard more of the old words of this old song than the title.' The music is said to be in Crockatfs MS., 1709; it is in Orpheus Caledonius, 1725, No. _f, to verses by ' namby-pamby ' Phillips beginning ' Blest as the immortal Gods': Ramsay's Musick, c. 1726; Craig s Scots Tunes, 1730, ji; McGibbon's Scots Tunes, 1742, ij ; Caledonian Pocket Companion, 1754, vi. p; Bremner's Scots Songs (second series), 1757, 7; and Scots Musical Museum, 1787, No. 41.
No. 98. O, wat ye wha that lo'es me. Thomson's Scotish Airs, 1799, 6j. ' Written for this work by Robert Burns. Air, Morag.' The precise date when it was written has not been ascertained, but probably in the autumn of 1795, for in January, 1796, in forwarding a copy to Robert Cleghorn, Burns apologizes for not sending it sooner, and excuses himself for the omission. He had lost a young and darling daughter, and immediately after, was attacked by rheumatic fever which kept him many weeks in bed. Cleghoru had previously met Jean Lorimer at Burns's house, and was interested in the poet's model.
The song is marked for the tune Morag, as Burns did not consider that his Young Highland rover fitted that melody. See Song No. 292.
No. 99. There's nane shall ken. Scots Musical Museum, 1796, No. 4j8. The MS. in the British Museum contains the following holograph note : ' This tune is evidently the old air, We'll gang nae mair to yon town, and I suspect it is not the best set of the air, but in Bowie's and other collections the old tune is to be found, and you can correct this by these copies.' Burns was always at his best in the songs for the Museum. He worked in his natural element unfettered, and was never gravelled in the compulsory use of English to satisfy an editor who wished to suppress the Scottish'vernacular. The airy freedom of this little lyric may be compared with the laboured verses

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