Miss Elizabeth Glegg's

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X:1 T:Miss Elizabeth Glegg's M:C| L:1/16 R:Strathspey B:Archibald Duff – Collection of Strathspey Reels &c. (1794, p. 24) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:G B2|d3GB3G d3Gce3|d3G cBAG EA3 A2Bc|d3GB3G d3Gce3| edcB cBAG D2G2G2:|f2|g3ag2d2 eg3Bd3|g3ag2d2 ea3 a4| g3agd3 eg3Bd3|ec3 AF3 G4 G4|g3ag2d2 eg3Bd3| g3ag2d2 ea3 a4|g3deg3 d3BGB3|c3B A3G DG3G2||



MISS ELIZABETH CLEGG. Scottish, Strathspey (cut time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. Probably composed by Archibald Duff for Elizabeth Glegg (1779-1851), who would have been aged fifteen when Duff's volume was published. She married James Burnes (1780-1852), in April, 1800, at Montrose, and the couple eventually had a large family of nine sons and six daughters. He was provost (Mayor) of Montrose and a first cousin of poet Robert Burns.

Elizabeth herself was the daughter of Adam Glegg, a merchant burgess and former Provost of Montrose. As a young man James was apprenticed to his father and studied law, becoming a solicitor. He became Dean of the Guildry incorporation and entered the town council as a councillor on the 11th December 1817, on the 23rd September 1818, he was elected chief magistrate (Provost, the Scottish equivalent of ‘Mayor’). After an interval of four years, he was again re-elected provost in September, 1824, he left that office on the 2nd February, 1825, and was appointed as a joint Town Clerk. He had a deep interest in municipal affairs, and exposed the abuses of the old burgh system whereby the old council elected the new council without any mandate or vote from the local citizens. He was described as ‘a father of Scottish Burgh reform’ when he supported the move for elected council members. He was appointed a Justice of the Peace (J.P.) for Forfarshire, this in recognition of his public services, it is said that ‘he was held in high esteem for his upright conduct, his great humour, and generosity of disposition.” James Burness owned a large house which stood in a street called the Bow Butts in Montrose. (This house still exists, though now in a very run down and dilapidated state.)[1]

One of their sons, Captain Sir Alexander Burnes [1] (1805-1841) was a Scottish traveller and explorer who took part in The Great Game. His story makes for interesting reading.

Additional notes

Source for notated version: -

Printed sources : - Archibald Duff (Collection of Strathspey Reels &c.), 1794; p. 24.

Recorded sources: -



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  1. by Iain D. McIntosh, 2014, "The Montrose Cousins of Robert Burns," [2]