Myers Literary Guide:
The North-East

JOHN MACKAY WILSON (1804 - 1835)

Wilson was born in Tweedmouth. His first literary work seems to have been the poem 'A Glance at Hinduism' (1824). Wilson spent some time in Edinburgh, where his plays included The Gowrie Conspiracy (1829) and Margaret of Anjou. He returned to Berwick and became editor of the Berwick Advertiser in 1832. By then, however, he had become addicted to the bottle. He is buried in the crowded graveyard at Tweedmouth church.

The six volumes of his Tales of the Border (1834-40) had originally appeared in weekly parts and after Wilson's death they were continued for his widow, with Alexander Leighton as editor. A new edition by Leighton extended to 20 volumes (1857-59) and his 1869 revision added four more volumes.

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