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Burns

Robert Burns

Market Place, Dumfries

Period:
19th Century
Description:

A steel plate engraving from a painting by D O Hill RSA of the town where Robert Burns spent the last years of his life.

 

When Robert Burns exchanged the role of farmer for that of Exciseman he moved with his family from Ellisland Farm into a tenement flat in Bank Street, Dumfries, close to the Whitesands and the River Nith. The family lived here from 1791 until 1793 when they moved to a better quality house in Mill Street (now Burns Street).

 

Dumfries at that time was a lively town of some 5,600 inhabitants, mostly living tightly packed into tenement closes of red sandstone. The town was a busy port and in 1792 Burns was promoted to the Dumfries Port Division of the Excise.

 

This view of Dumfries 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: 137 mm, length: 92 mm
Source:
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
DUMFM:0199.72 [Land of Burns, Volume II]
Digital Number:
DMBN192n
Creation Date:
1846
Copyright:
Dumfries & Galloway Council