The Merry Muses of Caledonia by Robert Burns

Book Review by Nat Smith | 26 May 2009
Book title: The Merry Muses of Caledonia
Author: Robert Burns

The Merry Muses of Caledonia is Robert Burns’ collected ‘racy’ poems. But not exactly, because some of them are simply poems or songs Burns collected himself and some are only tentatively attributed to Burns and some belong to a few other categories too. The problems in assembling this text are explained in Valentina Bold’s comprehensive introduction. This is probably the best approximation of an original collection that Burns made for his own amusement in a notebook, which has been lost to time. So what’s in it? Poems, by Burns, with titles like The Fornicator and Nine Inch Will Please A Lady. They’re good too, as you might expect, and this edition includes a generous supply of supplementary material to help you get as much enjoyment out of the collection as possible. There are cheaper collected editions of Burns out there, but this very fine edition would make a great gift for any Burns fan. [Nat Smith]

Out Now. Published by Luath Press. Cover Price £15