Robert Henryson
  • Robert Henryson

  • Born: Scotland.

  • Description: Robert Henryson (1425 - 1506) was a Scottish poet who worked as a schoolmaster in the Royal Burgh of Dunfermline after studying church law at Glasgow University. His most popular works were his Scots versions of Aesop's Fables.

    Counted among the Scots Makars, he was a distinctive voice in the Northern Renaissance at a time when culture was on a cusp between medieval and renaissance sensibilities.

    Henryson's writing consists mainly of narrative works highly inventive in their development of story-telling techniques. He generally achieved a canny balance of humour and high seriousness which is often multi-layered in its effects. This is especially so in his Morall Fabillis, in which he expresses a consistent but complex world view that seems standard, on the surface, vis a vis the major ruling power of the church, while containing critical and questioning elements. This range is further extended in his Testament of Cresseid with its more tragic vision. Overall, his themes and tone convey an attractive impression of humanity and compassionate intellect. He was a subtle rhetorician and remains to this day one of the finest in the Scots language.