Complete Songs Of Robert Burns - online book

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Kirkpatrick Sharpe contributed to Stenhouse's Illustrations the copy of a local Annandale hunting song. In the first stanza the well known refrain is introduced:—
' The cock's at the crawing, The day's at the dawing, The cock 's at the crawing, We're o'er lang here.'
Lastly, the concluding stanza of the bacchanalian Landlady, count the lawin, Song No. 22J, contains the lines so often quoted :—
'Landlady count the lawin
The day is near the dawin,' &c.
Stenhouse erroneously assumed that the music of the song in the Fayrfax MS. was that of Hey, tutti, taitie. Neither is The day d&wis in Straloch's MS., 1627, the tune of Hey, tuiti, taitie. which from its construction may well be accounted an ancient melody, although the music is not in any collection prior to the Caledonian Pocket Companion, 1751, I'll. i}. It is also in McGibbon's Scots Tunes, 1755, 3}; and with the Ode in Thomson's Scotish Airs, 1801. For another set of the air, see Song No. 2.27. The Rebellion doubt­less brought it into more prominent notice, which would account for its publica­tion, but that it was played at Bannockburn is most likely a pleasing fiction. According to Froissart, who obtained the particulars from three eye-witnesses, the Scottish foot-soldiers at the Battle of Otterburn, 1388, carried a large horn slung round the neck after the manner of hunters. To frighten, the enemy these horns were sounded in chorus and, being of different sizes, the noise was so great that it could be heard miles off. The bagpipe is first named in Scottish records about the close of the fifteenth century. The figure of a piper is sculptured in Melrose Abbey of an earlier date than any written record of the instrument in Scotland-, and in Rosslyn Chapel is a chiselled figure with bare legs and feet and wearing a kilt, playing the pipes.
No. 256. O, wha will to St. Stephen's house. Gilbert Burns Edition, London, 1820, from a manuscript entitled ' The fHe champHre. Tune Killi-crankie.' The summer of 1788 is fixed as the date of the entertainment re­corded in this programme ballad. According to Gilbert Burns, its origin was due to a garden-party given by William Cunninghame of Annbank, Ayrshire, on coming of age and entering into the possession of his grandfather's estates. The entertainment was then believed to have a political meaning. Burns knew the host, who some years later married a daughter of his dear friend and correspondent, Mrs. Stewart of Afton. Boswell and Dr. Johnson are referred to in the close of the first stanza.
For Notes on the tune*, see song No. 328. •
No. 257. How oan my poor heart be glad? Currie, Works, 1800, iv. i;6, entitled ' On the seas and far away. Tune, O'er the hills, 81c' Thomson's Scotish Airs, 1805,161. The MS. is in Brechin Castle. Sent to Thomson August 30, 1794. Later Burns withdrew the song saying that making a song ' is like begetting a son : you cannot know whether you have a wise man or a fool, until you produce him to the world and try him.' Thomson omitted the second stanza, and for a chorus repeated the first without variation. Burns was not much attached to this melody of doubtful origin, which belongs to a song referring t'o the wars in Queen Anne's reign, entitled, Jockey's Lamentation, printed with the tune in Durfey's Pills, edition 1709 and 1719, v.) 16. Ramsay published an altered version in the Tea- Table Miscellany, 1725, beginning 'Jockey met with Jenny fair.' In the Pepysian library is a black letter ballad in Scottish orthography printed about 1660 entitled The wind hath blawn ?ny plaid away: or, a discourse betwixt a young man and the Elphin Knight to be sung to its own new pleasant tune. The last line of every