Welcome to
Burns Country - Home
 
Search This Site
 

Everything you wanted to know about Robert Burns, Scotland's national bard (and lots more besides). Please let us know if anything's missing, wrong, or just plain wonderful

Burns Country Collage

AULD LANG SYNE
Words | Karaoke!

Burns Shop
Poems and Songs
Burns Encyclopaedia
Burns Suppers
Burns Cottage and Park
Burns in English
Burns Chess Set
Burns Links
Scotweb Mall
 
robert burns store
View our exclusive range of distinctive Robert Burns related products.

Register with our Shopping Club for further offers and unique member offers.

Contact us:
info@robertburns.org


The Burns Encyclopedia
Home | Introduction | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Constable, Lady Winifred Maxwell (1736 — 1801)

The only surviving child of the 6th and last Earl of Nithsdale, who forfeited his lands for his share in the 1715 rising. Herself a staunch Jacobite, she married William Haggerston Constable of Everingham in 1758, who assumed the name and arms of Maxwell.

Lady Winifred, on her return to Scotland after a protracted absence, rebuilt her ancestral home, Terreagles, in the Stewartry of Kirkcudbright. Burns occasionally visited her there, and his 'Nithsdale's Welcome Hame' was written for her return. In a letter to her from Ellisland, dated 16th Dcember 1789, he remarks: '... with your Ladyship I have the honor to be connected by one of the strongest and most endearing ties in the whole Moral World — Common Sufferers in a Cause where even to be unfortunate is glorious, the Cause of Heroic Loyalty'. Burns then repeated his cherished belief that his ancestors were 'out' in the Jacobite rising: 'Though my Fathers had not illustrious Honors and vast properties to hazard in the contest; though they left only their humble cottages only to add so many units more to the unnoted croud that followed their Leaders; yet, what they could they did, and what they had they lost: with unshaken firmness and unconcealed Political Attachment, they shook hands with Ruin for what they esteemed the cause of their King and their Country.' With this letter, Burns sent a copy of his verses, 'To William Tytler Esq. Of Woodhouselee'.

"Revered defender of beauteous Stuart
Of Stuart, a name once respected;
A name which to love was the mark of a true hert,
But now 'tis despised and neglected..."
(Incidentally the second stanza begins with what was surely Burns's worst line:
"Tho' something like moisture conglobes in my eye!")

When Burns was laid up with a broken right arm in the spring of 1791, he received from Lady Winifred the present of a snuff box containing on the lid an inlaid miniature of Queen Mary. (Chambers wrote that: 'Many years after, one of the poet's sons, having taken this box with him to India, had the misfortune to damage the portrait irreparably in leaping on board a vessel.') Burns replied to Lady Winifred on 25th April 1791, thanking her for the gift: 'I assure your Ladyship, I shall set it apart: the symbols of Religion shall only be more sacred. In the moment of Poetic composition the Box shall be my inspiring Genius.'

Buy the Burns Encyclopedia online
Home | Introduction | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Robert Burns Store

NEW!! robert burns store View our exclusive range of distinctive Robert Burns related products. Register with our Shopping Club for further offers and unique member offers.Click here...


Complete Burns Songs

linn recordings of burns Linn Records have completed their landmark recording of all 368 Burns songs, available as individual CDs or a 12 volume presentation box set. We have full details. Click here...


Burns Music & Recordings
Search our huge CD and music store for any Burns-related phrase!
Hint: Type "lang syne" or "peck maut" etc. into the Search box there for all artists, titles, descriptions or track listings with the words entered.
Burns Chess Sets

Burns Chess SetsUnique collectors' pieces based on Burns' life and works. (The ideal gift for your Burns Supper guests!) Click here...

Scotweb Store

ScotwebThe finest Scottish shopping site in the world, with the world's largest choice of kilts and tartans, exclusive jewelry, Highland Dress, Bagpipes and piping supplies, cashmere, and much more. Buying from these sites helps pay for the upkeep of Burns Country! Click here...