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Encyclopedia > William Dunbar

William Dunbar (c. 1460 – c. 1520), Scottish poet, was probably a native of East Lothian. This is assumed from a satirical reference in the Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedie, where, too, it is hinted that he was a member of the noble house of Dunbar. Events The first Portuguese navigators reach the coast of modern Sierra Leone. ... mary elline m. ... Motto (Latin) No one provokes me with impunity Cha togar mfhearg gun dioladh (Scottish Gaelic)1 Wha daur meddle wi me?(Scots)1 Anthem (Multiple unofficial anthems) Scotlands location in Europe Capital Edinburgh Largest city Glasgow Official languages English, Gaelic, Scots Government Constitutional monarchy  -  Queen Queen Elizabeth II... The poor poet A poet is a person who writes poetry. ... East Lothian (Lodainn an Ear in Gaelic) is one of 32 unitary council areas in Scotland, and a lieutenancy Area. ...



His name appears in 1477 in the Register of the Faculty of Arts at the University of St Andrews, among the Determinants or Bachelors of Arts, and in 1479 among the masters of the university. Thereafter he joined the order of Observantine Franciscans, at St Andrews or Edinburgh, and proceeded to France as a wandering friar. He spent a few years in Picardy, and was still abroad when, in 1491, Bothwell's mission to secure a bride for the young James IV reached the French court. There is no direct evidence that he accompanied Blackadder, archbishop of Glasgow, on a similar embassy to Spain in 1495. On the other hand, we know that he proceeded with that prelate to England on his more successful mission in 1501. Events January 5 - Battle of Nancy - Charles the Bold of Burgundy is again defeated, and this time is killed. ... St Marys College Bute Medical School St Leonards College[5][6] Affiliations 1994 Group Website http://www. ... Franciscans is the common name used to designate a variety of mendicant religious orders of men or women tracing their origin to Francis of Assisi and following the Rule of St. ... For other uses, see St Andrews (disambiguation). ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... wazzup Categories: | ... James IV (March 17, 1473-September 9, 1513) was King of Scots from 1488 to his death. ... The Archbishop of Glasgow is the Ordinary of the Roman Catholic Metropolitan Archdiocese of Glasgow. ... Motto (French) God and my right Anthem God Save the King (Queen) England() – on the European continent() – in the United Kingdom() Capital (and largest city) London (de facto) Official languages English (de facto) Government Constitutional monarchy  -  Queen Queen Elizabeth II  -  Prime Minister Tony Blair MP Unification  -  by Athelstan 967  Area... 1501 was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

Dunbar had meanwhile (about 1500) returned to Scotland, and had become a priest at court, and a royal pensioner. His literary life begins with his attachment to James's household. All that is known of him from this date to his death about 1520 is derived from the poems or from entries in the royal registers of payments of pension and grants of livery. He is spoken of as the Rhymer of Scotland in the accounts of the English privy council dealing with the visit of the mission for the hand of Margaret Tudor, rather because he wrote a poem in praise of London, than because, as has been stated, he held the post of laureate at the Scottish court. In 1511 he accompanied the queen to Aberdeen and commemorated her visit in verse. Other pieces such as the Orisoun ("Quhen the Gouernour past in France"), apropos of the setting out of the regent Albany, are of historical interest, but they tell us little more than that Dunbar was alive. The date of his death is uncertain. He is named in Lyndsay's Testament and Complaynt of the Papyngo (1530) with poets then dead, and the reference precedes that to Douglas who had died in 1522. He certainly survived his royal patron. We may not be far out in saying that he died about 1520. 1500 was a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Margaret Tudor Margaret Tudor (29 November 1489 – October 1541) was the eldest of the two surviving daughters of Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York, and the elder sister of Henry VIII. In 1503 she married James IV, king of Scotland, thus becoming the mother of James V and... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... Sir David Lyndsay (c. ...

Work and Influence

Dunbar's reputation among his immediate successors was considerable. By later criticism, stimulated in some measure by Scott's eulogy that he is "unrivalled by any which Scotland has produced," he has held the highest place among the northern makars. The praise, though it has been at times exaggerated, is on the whole just, certainly in respect of variety of work and mastery of form. He belongs, with James I, Henryson and Douglas, to what was formerly called the Scottish Chaucerian school, although the influence of Chaucer on these writers was in fact minimal. In his allegorical poems reminiscences of Chaucer's style and literary habit are frequent, but his wilder humour and greater heat of blood give him opportunities in which the Chaucerian tradition is not helpful, or even possible. A makar in Scottish literature is a poet or bard, often attached to the royal court. ... James I (December 10, 1394 – February 21, 1437) reigned as King of Scots from April 4, 1406 until February 21, 1437. ... Robert Henryson (c. ... Gavin Douglas (c. ...

One hundred and one poems have been ascribed to Dunbar. Of these at least ninety are generally accepted as his: of the eleven attributed to him it would be hard to say that they should not be considered authentic. Most doubt has clung to his verse tale The Freiris of Berwik.

Dunbar's chief allegorical poems are The Goldyn Targe and The Thrissil and the Rois. The motif of the former is the poet's futile endeavour, in a dream, to ward off the arrows of Dame Beautee by Reason's "scheld of gold." When wounded and made prisoner, he discovers the true beauty of the lady: when she leaves him, he is handed over to Heaviness. The noise of the ship's guns, as the company sails off, wakes the poet to the real pleasures of a May morning. Dunbar works on the same theme in a shorter poem, known as Beauty and the Prisoner. The Thrissil and the Rois is a prothalamium in honour of James IV and Margaret Tudor, in which the heraldic allegory is based on the familiar beast-parliament. James IV (March 17, 1473-September 9, 1513) was King of Scots from 1488 to his death. ...

The greater part of Dunbar's work is occasional--personal and social satire, complaints, orisons and pieces of a humorous character. His best known orison, usually remembered as Timor mortis conturbat me which is repeated as the third line of each verse, is titled Lament for the Makers and takes the form of a prayer in memory of the medieval Scots poets. For other uses, see Prayer (disambiguation). ... Timor mortis conturbat me is a Latin phrase commonly found in late medieval English poetry. ...

The humorous works show Dunbar at his best, and point the difference between him and Chaucer. The best specimen of this work, of which the outstanding characteristics are sheer whimsicality and topsy-turvy humour, is The Ballad of Kynd Kittok. This strain runs throughout many of the occasional poems, and is not wanting in odd passages in Dunbar's contemporaries; and it has the additional interest of showing a direct historical relationship with the work of later Scottish poets, and chiefly with that of Robert Burns. Dunbar's satire is never the gentle funning of Chaucer: more often it becomes invective. Examples of this type are The Satire on Edinburgh, The General Satire, the Epitaph on Donald Owre, and the powerful vision of The Dance of the Sevin Deidlie Synnis. In the Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedie, an outstanding specimen of a favourite northern form, analogous to the continental estrif, or tenzone, he and his rival reach a height of scurrility which is certainly without parallel in English literature. This poem has the additional interest of showing the antipathy between the Scots-speaking inhabitants of the Lothians and the Gaelic-speaking folk of Carrick, in southern Ayrshire, where Walter Kennedy was from. Robert Burns, foremost Scottish poet Robert Burns (January 25, 1759 – July 21, 1796) was a poet and a lyricist. ... Scots refers to the Anglic varieties spoken in parts of Scotland. ... // Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) is a member of the Goidelic branch of Celtic languages. ... The ex-comital district of Carrick today forms part of South Ayrshire, Scotland. ... Ayrshire (Siorrachd Inbhir Àir in Scottish Gaelic) is a region of south-west Scotland, located on the shores of the Firth of Clyde. ... Walter Kennedy (flourished 1500), Saint of Lord Kennedy, was educated at Glasgow, and is perhaps best known as Dunbars antagonist in the Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedy. ...

Dunbar also contributed to poetry of the natural environment, as exemplified in his description of Fowlsheugh, a notable Scottish sheer cliff area on the North Sea near Dunnottar Castle. Fowlsheugh cliffs in breeding season. ... The North Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean, located between the coasts of Norway and Denmark in the east, the coast of the British Isles in the west, and the German, Dutch, Belgian and French coasts in the south. ... Dunnottar Castle Dunnottar Castle is a ruined medieval fortress located upon a rocky outcrop on the north-east coast of Scotland, about two miles south of Stonehaven. ...

First printed obscenity

Dunbar has the curious distinction of having been responsible for the first printed use of the word "fuck": his 1503 poem "Brash of Wowing" [Collected Poems, ed. Mackenzie SEE 'In secret place this hyndir nycht'] includes the lines: "Yit be his feirris he wald haif fukkit:/ Ye brek my hairt, my bony ane." He thus established a long and noble tradition of which some critics of Kelman or Welsh appear to be quite unaware. The powerful word which Dunbar put into print in 1508 was not decriminalised until 1960. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... James Kelman (born in Glasgow on June 9, 1946) is an influential writer of novels, short stories and plays. ... Irvine Welsh (born Leith, Edinburgh, September 27, 1958) is an acclaimed contemporary Scottish novelist, most famous for his novel Trainspotting. ...

His The flyting of Dunbar and Kennedie also contains the term cuntbittin (meaning afflicted with venereal disease), the first known use of the word cunt in literature (although Chaucer used queynte as a euphemism for the word in the Canterbury Tales). This poem also contains the line [38] 'Wan-fukkit funling, that natour maid ane yrle'. Cunt is an English vulgarism most commonly used in referring to the vulva, the vagina, the clitoris, and, more generally, the pubis, from the mons veneris to the perineum. ... Chaucer: Illustration from Cassells History of England, circa 1902 Chanticleer the rooster from an outdoor production of Chanticleer and the Fox at Ashby_de_la_Zouch castle Geoffrey Chaucer (ca. ... Canterbury Tales Woodcut 1484 The Canterbury Tales is a collection of stories written by Geoffrey Chaucer in the 14th century (two of them in prose, the rest in verse). ...

"Back to Dunbar"

For the Scottish Literary Renaissance in the mid-twentieth century, William Dunbar was a touchstone. Many tried to imitate his style, and "high brow" subject matter, such as Hugh MacDiarmid and Sydney Goodsir Smith. As Hugh MacDiarmid himself said, they had to go, "back to Dunbar". The Scottish version of modernism, the Scottish literary renaissance was begun by Hugh MacDiarmid in the 1920s when he abandoned his English language poetry and began to write in Lallans. ... Hugh MacDiarmid was the pen name of Christopher Murray Grieve (August 11, 1892, Langholm - September 9, 1978), perhaps the most important Scottish poet of the 20th century. ... Sydney Goodsir Smith (26 October 1915 - 15 January 1975) was a New Zealand-Scottish poet, artist, dramatist and novelist. ... Hugh MacDiarmid was the pen name of Christopher Murray Grieve (August 11, 1892, Langholm - September 9, 1978), perhaps the most important Scottish poet of the 20th century. ...

William Dunbar is commemorated in Makars' Court, outside The Writers' Museum, Lawnmarket, Edinburgh.

Selections for Makars' Court are made by The Writers' Museum; The Saltire Society; The Scottish Poetry Library. The Saltire Society, established in 1936, is an organisation dedicated to promoting the culture and environment of Scotland. ...


  • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition article "William Dunbar", a publication now in the public domain.

Encyclopædia Britannica, the 11th edition The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ...

External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
William Dunbar

Alternative sources: Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Wikiquote is a sister project of Wikipedia, using the same MediaWiki software. ... The building on George IV bridge The National Library of Scotland is a legal deposit library in Scotland. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Timor mortis conturbat me is a Latin phrase commonly found in late medieval English poetry. ...

  Results from FactBites:
William Dunbar - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1041 words)
Dunbar's chief allegorical poems are The Goldyn Targe and The Thrissil and the Rois.
In the Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedie, an outstanding specimen of a favourite northern form, analogous to the continental estrif, or tenzone, he and his rival reach a height of scurrility which is certainly without parallel in English literature.
For the Scottish Literary Renaissance in the mid-20th century, William Dunbar was a touchstone.
  More results at FactBites »



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