James Macpherson (1736-1796) published in 1760 Fragments of Ancient Poetry and then Works of Ossian, 2 vols. (1765) became a literary sensation throughout Europe. He used Gaelic ballads in manuscript and from oral sources to inspire his themes and plots but claimed his poetry to be the authentic translations of an ancient bard. Some, like Elizabeth Montagu, believed or simply enjoyed the illusion that the fragments were genuine whilst others, such as Dr Johnson, questioned the standards of his scholarship.
Also known as:
- James Macpherson
|Oxford DNB DOI|
Mentioned in 1 letters
|Letter from Elizabeth Montagu to James Beattie||2192|
Please note that all dates and location information are provisional, initially taken from the library and archive catalogues. As our section editors continue to work through the material we will update our database and the changes will be reflected across the edition.