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Jessy Lewars Scotland Epitaph

Jessy Lewars (1778-1855), the youngest daughter of John Lewars, Supervisor of Excise at Dumfries, was the last of Burns's heroines. During the last six months of Burns's illness Jessy helped to nurse him, and he fancied himself in love with her. She lies buried in St Michael's Churchyard, Dumfries, not far from the grave of Burns. These lines were written by Burns while Jessy suffered from a slight indisposition. 'In case of the worst,' joked Burns, 'let me provide you with an epitaph.'

Say, sages, what's the charm on earth
Can turn Death's dart aside?
It is not purity and worth,
Else Jessy had not died.

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