About this artwork

This anonymous drawing shows the village of Mauchline. In 1784, Robert Burns had moved to nearby Mossgiel Farm. Burns would go into Mauchline to socialise, and life in the village stimulated a lot of his work. He observed the political wrangling of the divided local Kirk, and his feelings towards the church inspired ‘Holy Willie’s Prayer’ and ‘The Holy Fair’. Temptation and drink awaited him at Poosie Nancy’s Inn in Mauchline’s London Street, which became the setting for his poem ‘The Jolly Beggars’. ‘Poosie Nancy’ was Mrs Agnes Gibson, owner of the inn. Burns also met one of the ‘Mauchline Belles’, Jean Armour. Jean went on to become his wife and bore him eleven children. This drawing was engraved by J. Carter and included in 'The Complete Works of Robert Burns Illustrated' (1841).

  • title: Poosie Nancy's House, Mauchline
  • accession number: D 2620
  • artist: Unknown
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Work on paper
  • subject: Burns
  • materials: Watercolour and white heightening on paper
  • date created: Unknown
  • measurements: 11.70 x 18.70 cm
  • credit line: William Findlay Watson Bequest 1881