Burns’s Strength of Body, pp.75-76.

[Anecdotes of Burns Contents]

ALLAN CUNNINGHAM records the following – “I was very young when I first saw Burns. Burns had just come to Nithsdale, and I think he appeared a shade more swarthy than he does in Nasmyth’s picture, and at least ten years older than he really was at the time. His frame was very muscular and well-proportioned, though he had a short neck, and something of a ploughman’s stoop; he was strong, and proud of his strength. I saw him one evening match himself with a number of masons; and, out of five-and-twenty practised hands, the most vigorous young men in the parish, there was only one that could lift the same weight as Burns.” 

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