Special Collections, University of Otago, is fortunate to have a collection of books and manuscripts by and about James Hogg (1770 – 1835), the Scottish writer known as the ‘Ettrick Shepherd’.
Hogg’s ‘Marion’s Jock’ is a compelling tale of greed told in the Scots dialect of the Border. His Altrive Tales, in which this story appears, was envisaged as a multi-volumed work, but it faulted because his publisher, Cochrane, was declared bankrupt.
Hogg was ever the optimist, writing in his memoirs:
‘I took it into my head that I would collect a poem from every living author in Britain, and publish them in a neat and elegant volume, by which I calculated I might make my fortune.’
James Hogg, Altrive Tales: Collected among the Peasantry of Scotland, and from Foreign Adventurers. London: James Cochrane, 1835.