More about this epitaph
This is a mock epitaph for William Muir (1745-1793), a miller in Tarbolton who proved to be a good friend to the Burnes family.
When Jean Armour was thrown out by her family in March 1788 it was Muir who took her in.
After Muir’s death, Burns remained a friend of the family, and of his widow he remarked, "I am much interested for her, and will... move heaven and earth in her behalf."
The poem was written sometime in April 1784, and appears in the First Commonplace Book. It was one of seven epitaphs that Burns included in the Kilmarnock edition.