Edinburgh Bookshelf

Old and New Edinburgh Vol. I


WILLIAM CREECH. The Lucknbooths. remembered after he had passed away; but he had acquired penurious habits, with a miserly avidity for money, which not only precluded all benevolence to the deserving, but actually marred even the honest discharge of business transactions. In 1771 he entered into partnership with Mr. Kincaid, who left the business two years after, and came from his establishment. He published the works of Cullen, Gregory, Adam Smith, Burns, Dugald Stewart, Henry Mackenzie, Blair, Beattie, Campbell (the opponent of Hume), Lords Woodhouselee and Kames, and by the last-named he was particularly regarded with esteem and friendship ; and it was on the occasion of his having gone WILLIAM CREECH. (From th Port~uit ay SW Henry Raebzmz.) the whole devolving upon Mr. Creech, he conducted it for forty-four years with singular enterprise and success. For all that time his quaint shop at the east-end of the Luckenbooths was the resort of the clergy, the professors, and also all public and eminent men in the Scottish metropolis ; and his breakfast-room was a permanent literary lounge, which was known by the name of " Creech's Levee." During the whole of the period mentioned nearly all the really valuable literature of the time to London for some time in 1787 that Burns wrote his well-known poem of " Willie 's Awa : "- " Oh, Willie was a witty wight, And had 0' things an' unco slight, Auld Reekie aye he,keepit tight, And trig and braw ; But now they'll busk her like a fright- Willie's awa ! " . We have already referred to the club in which originated the Mirror and Lounger. These
Volume 1 Page 156
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