National Records of Scotland

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Lady Caroline Nairne (1766-1845)

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Lady Caroline Nairne (1766-1845)

Songwriter

Caroline Oliphant became lady Nairne when her husband, Major William Nairne, was raised to the peerage in 1824. After his death she began her travels on the continent. Her father was a Jacobite and she wrote songs for the traditional tunes she collected which reflect her sympathies. 'Will ye no' come back again?' was written for the exiled Prince Charles Edward Stuart. Other works include 'The Auld Hoose' and 'The Rowan Tree'. As song-writing was not considered a suitable occupation for a person of her social standing she adopted the pseudonym Mrs Bogan of Bogan. Her work was published in 'The Scottish Minstrel' between 1821 and 1824. Her later travels in Europe were for the benefit of her sick son, who died in 1837.

After her death much of her verse was published by her sister in 'Lays of Strathearn'. Find out more in the article Lady Nairne - The Flower of Strathearn on our ScotlandsPeople website.

Lady Caroline Nairne is one of the famous Scots commemorated in our Archivists' Garden with references to her work in the entries on the bluebell and rowan.

Birth in 1766

Carolina Oliphant was born on 16 August 1766, the daughter of Laurence Oliphant of Gask and Margaret Robertson. The Old Parish Register (OPR) for Findo Gask in Perthshire gives her place of birth as Gask.

Baptism entry for Carolina Oliphant (later Lady Nairne)

Birth entry for Carolina Oliphant (later Caroline Nairne) (20 KB jpeg)
National Records of Scotland, OPR 352/1

Testament of Lady Nairne

(National Records of Scotland, SC49/3/40 797-819)

View transcript (98 KB PDF)

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