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Poetical Address Mr. Tytler



[When these verses were written there was much stately Jacobitism
about Edinburgh, and it is likely that Tytler, who laboured to dispel
the cloud of calumny which hung over the memory of Queen Mary, had a
bearing that way. Taste and talent have now descended in the Tytlers
through three generations: an uncommon event in families. The present
edition of the Poem has been completed from the original in the poet's

Revered defender of beauteous Stuart,
Of Stuart, a name once respected,
A name, which to love, was once mark of a true heart,
But now 'tis despis'd and neglected.

Tho' something like moisture conglobes in my eye,
Let no one misdeem me disloyal;
A poor friendless wand'rer may well claim a sigh,
Still more, if that wand'rer were royal.

My fathers that name have rever'd on a throne,
My fathers have fallen to right it;
Those fathers would spurn their degenerate son,
That name should he scoffingly slight it.

Still in prayers for King George I most heartily join,
The Queen and the rest of the gentry,
Be they wise, be they foolish, is nothing of mine;
Their title's avow'd by my country.

But why of that epocha make such a fuss,
That gave us th' Electoral stem?
If bringing them over was lucky for us,
I'm sure 'twas as lucky for them.

But loyalty truce! we're on dangerous ground,
Who knows how the fashions may alter?
The doctrine, to-day, that is loyalty sound,
To-morrow may bring us a halter.

I send you a trifle, the head of a bard,
A trifle scarce worthy your care;
But accept it, good Sir, as a mark of regard,
Sincere as a saint's dying prayer.

Now life's chilly evening dim shades on your eye,
And ushers the long dreary night;
But you, like the star that athwart gilds the sky,
Your course to the latest is bright.

Robert Burns