Burns and the Clergy, p.40.

[Anecdotes of Burns Contents]

WHEN Burns first resolved to give his poems to the world, he had several manuscript copies of some of his poems handed about and read with general applause at convivial meetings. Burns one day called at his printer in Kilmarnock, and on producing his “Holy Fair,” and the question being asked – “Burns are you not afraid to use such freedom with these gentry?” meaning the clergy, the poet replied,

“Why, as to my purse, you know they can make nothing of it, and for my person, you see,” brandishing his oak stick, “I carry an excellent cudgel.”

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