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LADY NAIRNE AND HER SONGS. 107
Now fare-ye-weel, my am John, The world's cares are vain, John, We '11 meet and will be fain In the land o' the leal.
The fame of the authoress, so far as she can be said to have any of her own individual personality, rests upon this song, and sufficiently, while the English language shall last, but it was not the solitary example of her genius, and her poetical work, although not great in bulk, contains other lyrics of a very high quality, with a wide range from high martial spirit and homely pathos to gay and frolicsome humor, and instinct with the vital and living element of song. Lady Nairne was almost morbidly anxious to retain her incognito as a writer during her life, so that her own husband and nearest relatives were not in the secret, and those who surmised or guessed it hardly dared to allude to it in her presence, and the veil has rested over her personality to a great degree in comparison with the flood of light poured over the words and actions of her great contemporaries, Scott and Burns, and many lesser figures in Scotch provincial literature like Professor Wilson and Hogg. Nevertheless, since her death at a very advanced age in 1846, her songs have been collected and published under her own name, and enough has been made known concerning her life and character to give to her poetry