More about this song
This song was modelled on a fragment which appeared in the Herd MSS. David Herd (1732-1810) brought out a collection, Ancient and Modern Scottish Songs, Heroic Ballads, etc (1769).
The English folklorist Joseph Ritson (1752-1803) reprinted the lines that Burns wrote in his edition, Collection of Scottish Songs (1794), and James Hogg did the same for his work, The Jacobite Relics of Scotland (1819), which this time was accompanied by three additional stanzas.
The song itself is a lampoon of the Whigs and the values that they attach to the Revolution of 1688.