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GEORGE ROUTLEDGE AND CO.

FARRINGDON STREET.
NEW YORK : 18, BEEKMAN STREET.

1856.

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PREFACE.

THE Poems of Burns have been edited, and his Life has been written by eminent countrymen, with a copiousness of illustration and a minuteness of inquiry altogether beyond my abilities and my limits. Perhaps an English reader sometimes thinks the work slightly overdone, and even feels a very languid curiosity about the character of “ Poosie Nansie," or the politics of Dumfries. I have not, however, intentionally underrated the interest of my subject. The Text has been carefully examined, and the Notes convey the information which was incidentally furnished by the Poet and his brother, and generally in their own language. With a hope of rendering the Scottish Poems less difficult to the inexperienced eye, the harder words are explained at the foot of the page, and, I trust, with sufficient accuracy. The Biographical Sketch embraces the chief circumstances in the history of Burns, and attempts to present a view of his personal, religious, and intellectual character.

R. A. WILLMOTT.

St. Catherine's, Bear Wood,

May 7, 1856.

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