Paisley’s weaver poet born in Castle Street, son of a well-respected ‘bien’ weaver to whom Robert was apprenticed in 1786. Described by a contemporary as the ‘prettiest shuttler’ he had ever seen, Robert had a wee box on his loom-post for jotting down his ideas.
When a publisher declined a revised edition in 1810, and after a mental illness, the poet drowned himself in a culvert of the Candren Burn. The portrait shown was drawn one day after his death by another friend, John Morton.
Tannahill’s poems and songs are still popular today – ‘Jesssie the Flower o’ Dunblane’,’Will ye go Lassie go’,’ Thou Bonnie Woods o’ Craigielee’.