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I THE

WORKS

OF

ROBERT BURNS;

WITH

AN ACCOUNT OF HIS LIFE,

AND

A CRITICISM ON HIS WRITINGS.

TO WHICH ARE PREFIXED,
SOME OBSERVATIONS ON THE CHARACTER AND CONDITION

OF

THE SCOTTISH PEASANTRY.

IN FOUR VOLUMES.

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LIVERPOOL,

PRINTED BY J. M'CREERY, HOUGHTON-STREET;
FOR T. CADELL, JUN. AND W. DAVIES, STRAND, LONDON;
AND W. CREECH, EDINBURGH.

Sold also by Bell and Bradfute, P. Hill, and Manners and Miller, Edinburgh;
Brash and Reid, and J. Murdoch, Gla tgtnu; J, Brmvn, Aberdeen; W. Boyd,
Dumfries; J. Morrison, Perth j J. Forsyth, Ayr; and by Merritt and
Wright, If. Robinson, W. Harding, and E. Rushton, Liverpool,

1800.

20-2-1903 PREFACE.

THE first and principal part of the ensuing volume, consists of the correspondence between Mr. Burns and Mr. Thomson, on the subject of the beautiful work projected and executed by the latter, the nature of which is explained in the first number of the following series.* Vol. iv. a The >

* This work is entitled, "A Select Collection of Original Scottish Airs for the voice; to which are added, introductory and concluding Symphonies and Accompaniments for the Piano Forte and Violin, by Pleyel and Kozeluch. With select and characteristic Verses, by the most admired Scottish Poets, &c."

London, Printed and Sold by Preston, No. 97, Strand.

The undertaking of Mr. Thomson, is one on which the public may be congratulated in various points of view; not merely as having collected the finest of the Scottish songs and airs of past times, but as having given occasion to a number of original songs of our bard, which equal or surpass the former efforts of the pastoral muses of Scotland, and which, if we mistake not, may be safely compared with the lyric poetry of any age or country. The letters of Mr. Burns to Mr. Thomson include the songs he presented to him, some of which appear in different stages of their progress, and these letters will be found to exhibit occasionally his notions of song writing, and his opinions on various subjects of taste and criticism. These opinions, it will be observed, were called forth by the observations of his correspondent, Mr. Thomson; and without the letters of this gentleman,

those

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