Meston, William

(?1688-1745)
   Born in Aberdeenshire, the son of a blacksmith, and although poor, his parents sent him to Marischal College, Aberdeen. He was elected one of the doctors of Aberdeen high school, then, in 1715, professor of philosophy of Marischal College. He joined with Earl Marischal in fighting for James Stuart, the Old Pretender, and was rewarded by the governorship of Dunnottar Castle, Kincardineshire. After the battle of Sheriffmuir (November 1715) he, with many others, was forced into hiding in the hills. While in hiding he wrote verses called Mother Grim's Tales, published in Edinburgh in 1767. He died in Aberdeen and was buried in the Spittal churchyard in the old part of Aberdeen. Some of his other publications: Phaethon, or the first Fable of the second Book of Ovid's Metamorphoses burlesqu'd, 1720. The Knight of the Kirk, 1723. Mob contra Mob, or the Rabblers Rabbled, 1731. The Poetical Works, 1767. The Wife of Auchtermuchty, 1803. Some of his poems: "Cato's Ghost," "Holy Ode, From Mount Alexander," "Prologue to the Recruiting Officer," "The Publisher, to the Candid Reader," "To the Free-Masons."
   Sources: Biography of William Meston. Significant and Famous Scots (http://www.electricscotland.com/history/other/meston_william.htm). Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. English Poetry: Author Search. Chadwyck-Healey Ltd., 1995 (http://www.lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/epoetry/author.html). Stanford University Libraries and Academic Information Resources (http://library.stanford.edu).

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

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