MS: 'Epitaph on My Father'

Robert Burns, Author 
Object Number:


William Burnes died at Lochlea Farm, Tarbolton in 1784. Robert and his family brought his father's remains to Alloway kirkyard for burial. The headstone of his grave has this epitaph carved into it.

In the poem Burns draws attention to his father as a loving husband, tender parent and generous friend. He reflects on his humanity and virtuous habits.

The epitaph was included along with a number of other epitaphs in the Kilmarnock edition of his poems. This manuscript is probably an early draft as the first line here is not the same as the published version. Here the first line is, 'O ye who sympathise with Virtue's pains' rather than the published line 'O ye whose cheek the tear of pity stains'.

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