Annual Byron Society Lecture in Scotland, 13th February, 2020

By Dr Daniel Cook

6.00-7.30 pm, 50 George Square, Edinburgh


This is the Byron Society’s second Annual Scotland Lecture.

This is a free public lecture, organised in association with The Centre for the History of the Book.

Booking is required. Email to book a place.

Looking back on his early life in Aberdeen, Byron declared that he was “half a Scot by birth, and bred / A whole one”. In August 1798, he left Scotland to take up his English title, never to return.

But in his imagination he kept revisiting Scottish landscapes in poems such as ‘Lachin y Gair’ (“England! thy beauties are tame and domestic, / To one, who has rov’d on the mountains afar”) and ‘Song’ (“When I roved, a young Highlander, o’er the dark heath, / And climbed thy steep summit, oh Morven of snow!”). In a ballad, ‘Golice Macbane’, he honours Scottish warriors (“With thy back to the wall, and thy breast to the targe, / Full flashed thy claymore in the face of their charge”). Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, as many critics have pointed out, glimpses a guilt-ridden Byronic hero shaped by Scottish Calvinism. What happens when we read Byron’s poetry more firmly in the context of his Anglo-Scottish identity? Is such poetry “Scottish” in its form or content, or perhaps something else entirely? How have other poets responded to Byron’s Scottish poems?




The Project Room, 1st Floor

50 George Square,



Drinks at 6.00

Lecture 6.30-7.30pm


This is a free lecture, but booking is required.

Email to book a place.