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Burns at Irvine, pp.23-24.

[Anecdotes of Burns Contents]

ROBERT CHAMBERS relates how, in 1826, he conversed with a person who had been often in the company of Burns while he lived in Irvine. What had been remarked in him was his melancholy. Amongst ordinary people he would sit for a considerable time with his head resting on his hand, and his elbow resting on his knee; it was only when the company was joined by some man of superior intelligence, or by a female, that the young poet brightened up. His powers of argument were thought extraordinary. 

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