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Burns

Robert Burns

Burns's Cottage, Interior, Alloway

Period:
19th Century
Description:

A steel plate engraving from a painting by D O Hill RSA, of the interior of the cottage in which Robert Burns was born.

 

Robert Burns was born at Alloway near Ayr on the 25th January 1759, the eldest of seven children of Agnes and William Burnes. His father was a market gardener, who having acquired a small holding of land, had built this cottage with its whitewashed clay walls and thatched roof with his own hands.

 

The poet's father sold the cottage in 1781. At the time that D O Hill RSA painted this interior it was used as a public house. Over the years it became  a place of pilgrimage for Burns enthusiasts from around the world and in May 1881 it was purchased for £4,000 by the Trustees of the Burns Monument and opened to the public.

 

This view of the interior of Burns Cottage, Alloway was published in "The Land of Burns - A series of Landscapes and Portraits, Illustrative of the Life and Writings of the Scottish Poet". This was published in 1846 by Blackie and Son of Glasgow. At this time the development of steel plate engraving made it possible for images to be reproduced in much greater numbers than previous printing technology had allowed. Books such as this one, illustrated by engravings of works by eminent artists, became popular, although they were still  expensive and beyond the pocket of most people.

Materials/Media:
paper
Dimensions:
width: 138 mm, length: 93 mm
Source:
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
DUMFM:0199.72 [Land of Burns, Volume I]
Digital Number:
DMBN182n
Creation Date:
1846
Copyright:
Dumfries & Galloway Council