The Book of Scottish Anecdote: (1888)
A wonderful collection of Scottish Anecdotes.
21 are shown here, casting a light on the goings on of the folks of the time. File this as an example of pre-television and internet communication of ideas.
Under the guise of humour and anecdotal recitation the author is peddling his not-so-subtle free-thinking ideas to an audience who were fed up with being controlled from the pulpit by ministers chosen by the lairds and who were leaving the Establlshed Church of Scotland for the free-er secessionist churches.
Or maybe it was just a wee joke book.
And the author ? None other than Robert Chambers. Better known in Britain today for his Chambers Dictionary (1872) and Chambers Encyclopaedia (1874). He and his co-writer brother William were born in Peebles and strangely, both were born with six fingers and six toes !
It is recorded that Robert Chambers wrote to our own Dr Rankin in 1837