LOVERS of the works of Robbie Burns can now literally follow in the footsteps of the poet, with the publishing of the routes he took on his famous tours of Scotland.
Experts from the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow and National Library of Scotland have traced Burns’s tour itineraries on early 19th century roadmaps of Scotland and northern England.
They form part of a major new edition of the Bard’s prose work, the first time that Burns’ complete writings have been made available to the public in a fully annotated and edited form.
The maps, which are available online, will enable enthusiasts to follow Burns closely through the places and landscapes that inspired him.
The tour journals, with accompanying maps, are included in the new ‘Oxford Edition of the Works of Robert Burns: Commonplace Books, Tour Journals and Miscellaneous Prose’, edited by Professor Nigel Leask, Regius Chair of English Language and Literature at the University of Glasgow.
Professor Leask said: “The tour journals are fascinating because they offer us an insight into the life of a poet who was operating at the peak of his powers and reaping the benefits of his new-found fame. These texts also show Burns ruminating on some of the pressing social and political issues of the day; far from the figure of the ‘heaven taught ploughman’, at this point he was keeping company with some of the wealthiest and most powerful people in the land.”
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