(44) Power proposed to tackle such idolatry by broadening the spectrum of Burns studies and comparing the bard's poetry to the verses of Scottish medieval Makars
like William Dunbar and the themes of European poets like Heinrich Heine.
Exploration, ranging from Medieval Makars
to Scots Ballads, sheds new light on Scottish culture, literature and song.
', hints at the danger of Scots poetry becoming excessively
Poems such as Dunbar's Lament for the Makars
frequently borrow from the Office of the Dead and tend to voice communal emotion.
nothing but death, especially of the 'makars
,' the true
(20) Bawcutt, Dunbar the Makar
, 131, finds Dunbar's moral poems reflecting his interest in the "four last things, death, judgement, heaven, and hell," while Ian Ross sees thematic similarities between Dunbar's poetry and Bosch's and Durer's contemporaneous Judgment Day paintings and woodcuts ("Dunbar's Vision of the 'Four Last Things,'" Bards and Makars
The Scottish Literary Tour Company, which dramatises 'the literary life of Scotland' runs its Makars
Literary Tour from Makars
Court outside the Writers Museum.
This late-medieval cosmopolitanism may explain Scotland's overproduction and export of a traditional intelligentsia: the military, clerical or trading expatriates who related their national spirit to a European canon, through scholastic philosophy, the lyrics of the Makars
(court poets) and the Renaissance Latinity of George Buchanan (1506-82), the greatest classicist of his age.
"The Ballad of Technofear" propels the poet into cyberspace; a time will come he says when "naebody'll log in / on Scotslit but the profs, / and at the first daimen icker / the thrave'll be flogged off, / timor computeris conturbat me." But of course he has beaten technology at its own game here by inserting a phrase from Burns's "To a Mouse" and has also incorporated the final line of each stanza of William Dunbar's masterpiece, "Lament for the Makars
." The line is repeated in Dunbar; in Herbert there are variations such as "timor Microsoft conturbat me."
At the time, the international socialist--as I held myself to be--was quite convinced that he had emerged victorious from all the arguments, but the fact that it was then and only then that I bought Hugh MacDiarmid's anthology The Golden Treasury of Scottish Poetry, introducing me for the first time to both the medieval and the modern makars
, shows the persuasiveness which Derick's friendly advocacy possessed.
Cronin (1896-1981) via Josephine Tey (1896-1952) to Alistair MacLean (1922-87), was decidedly British in its orientation and subject matter, and drew a greater readership than the modernistic Scots language experiments of MacDiarmid and the school of Synthetic Scots makars
. For a literary critic quality necessarily trumps mass readership, but the historian is not so sure how to calibrate quality in relationship to readership, dissemination and other-less tangible-forms of cultural influence.
(7) For example, a recent compilation of their poetry is entitled, The Makars
: The Poems of Henyson, Dunbar, and Douglas, ed.