Rough Scan

THE demand for the ‘Legal Lyrics’ of George Outram, when the volume was published some years ago, was, after a second edition, greater than the supply, although several thousand copies were sold.  The volume is now out of print, and commands a considerable price in the book market when a copy is exposed at auction.  The representatives of the family of Mr Outram have now thought the time has come for the publication of a new edition, with several emendations upon the text of the last, which was not quite according to the original.  The editor has adhered as closely as possible to the original verses, only making some very slight alterations that seemed necessary for the rpesent time.  He has also, after a close examination of the other poems of Mr Outram, added a few pieces not before published, but which seemed to him characteristic of the genius of the author.  He might have given many other pieces of Mr Outram, unfortunately for his own reputation, wrote only for his friends, and not for posterity, and was willing to allow his more sober and elevating poems to lie aside.  The illustrations by Mr Ralston and mr Boys, it may be hoped, will give additional interest to the little volume that the editor now presents as the complete poetical works of one of the most genial and humorous of Scotchmen.  The interesting note to "The Faculty Roll" and other legal songs are supplied by an old and intimiate friend of Mr Outram, who had the merit of extracting from him one evening, after a day's fishing ont he Tweed, the song of "The Saumon," and also, from time to time, a good many stanzas of "The Atinuity," which Mr Outram sent him, to be sung at the annual dinner of a life insurance association with which he was connected, and at which "The Annuity" was always called for.  It may be also necessary to remark that the poems, as the judicious reader will readily perceive, are purely dramatic, and that the author expresses not his own experiences, but those of the type most familiar in Scottish society in his day.  George Outram himself was the most refined, gentle, and humane man of his time.


=_March_ 1887.