Beattie, George

(1786-1823)
   Beattie, a Scottish lawyer poet, is best known for his popular, long, comic poem "John O'Arnha: a Tale" about the Montrose town officer of the day. Thwarted in love, Beattie shot himself on the beach at St. Cyrus, near Montrose. He had the gift of humor and conversation, evident in his poems. "John O'Arnha," first published in the Montrose Review in 1815, then later published in a separate form, bears some resemblance to "Tam o' Shanter" by Robert Burns. It is full of rollicking humor and vivid descriptions. Other poems are "Murderit Mynstrell," 1818 - written when a boy - charmingly simple in character; the "Bark," 1819; and the "Dream," 1820. He also wrote several small lyrics.
   Sources: Angus Authors, Angus Council (www.angus.gov.uk/history/features/authors.htm). Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. For a full text of John O'Arnha, see www.scotstext.org/roughs/ george_beattie/john_o_arnha.asp.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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