Engraving from Act 1, scene 1 of 'The Gentle Shepherd' by Allan Ramsey (Perth: Robert Morison & Co, 1780). [Library shelfmark: NG.1176.d.27]
Allan Ramsay's poem 'The Gentle Shepherd' was first published in 1725. This 'pastoral comedy' was performed as a 'ballad opera'.
Nearly 100 editions were published in Britain and Ireland in the 18th century, and some of them included illustrations and music to the songs in the opera.
'Illustrating "The Gentle Shepherd"' was one of the themes in our display on 'Illustrating Scottish poems' in 2018.