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The winter it is past (sheet music)

Burns based his poem on the words of 'The Lovesick Maid', a popular ballad about a highwayman hanged in 1750. By excising references to that incident, and concentrating on the grief all lovers feel on parting, whether temporarily or permanently, Burns succeeded in strengthening the earlier poem immeasurably. The melody was first published in the 'Caledonian Pocket Companion' of 1759.

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