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Robert Fergusson

Fergusson, Robert (1750–1774). Scottish poet, son of a bank clerk, was ed. at the University of St. Andrews. His father dying, he became a copying clerk in an Edinburgh lawyer’s office. Early displaying a talent for humorous descriptive verse, he contributed to Ruddiman’s Weekly Magazine, then the principal Scottish receptacle for fugitive poetry. His verses, however, attracted attention by their merit, and he published some of them in a collected form. Unfortunately he fell into dissipated habits, under which his delicate constitution gave way, and he died insane in his 24th year. His poems influenced Burns, who greatly admired them.

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