Archive of Contributions

Shelves of books

This material, has been submitted to the Federation by respected Burnsians over time. We hope Members & Visitors will use these articles as a catalyst for comment, discussion & friendly debate on our facebook page or within the Discussion Forum. FACEBOOK LINK

Contributions from members and respected visitors, help us build a significant resource of material for others to refer to, learn from and enjoy. To this end, we'd be delighted to receive articles from any interested parties, whether experts in the field or keen amateurs. Contact Admin

2020 RBWF St Andrew's Lecture - delivered by Prof Patrick Scott. Topic was :

The Hunt for Burns Manuscripts: Then and Now, Here and There
Burnsians are often surprised to learn that there are Burns manuscripts in South Carolina. While the major collections are still in Scotland, the G. Ross Roy Collection is just part of a much bigger story about how Burns’s manuscripts have been dispersed, on both sides of the Atlantic.  Patrick Scott will discuss some of the collectors who have competed for them, how they have moved around over the past two centuries,  and how Burns researchers are tracking them down, even during lockdown for libraries. The talk takes examples from manuscripts in the Roy Collection and elsewhere, and reports on some recent discoveries and rediscoveries.

Video of the lecture


In October 2020 the RBWF were involved with Tamfest a festival built around Tam o' Shanter. As part of that event the following was offered :

Lecturing Tam on the ABCs

Monday 5th October - A. “In and Out of Tam o’ Shanter” Delivered by Jim Thomson, who is a past president of the Federation - based on his book of the same name. Video of the event :

Wednesday 7th October - B. “Tam o’ Shanter; A Tale of its First Publication” Delivered by Bill Dawson, who is a past president of the Federation - What drove Burns to compose the poem and when was the actual first date of publication :

Friday 9th October -  C. “Supernatural Burns” Delivered by Marc Sherland, President of the Federation - Why was Robert Burns so obsessed with the spooky and the supra-natural? Video of the Lecture

3. Tam the Glorious - Saturday 10th October - Competition video - An international  competition for the best ‘Glorious Tam’ recitation through use of Zoom. judged by RBWF Senior Vice President, Henry Cairney; Polly Beck, Speech & Drama Specialist; Jackie Higgins, Senior Vice President of Dumfries Ladies Burns Club.

Contestants : David Brown, Ron Pratt, Simon Lamb, Andy Harrower, Jim Osborne

The winner in 1st place was Andy Harrower and in 2nd place David Brown. Congratulations to every participant.  Video of the event :

Please note below some other resources which have been made available to Burnsians.