All but one of the images we have of Lowland pipers before 1770 were the work of the English water-colour painter, Paul Sandby (1731-1809), a founder member of the Royal Academy. Two of these images, done in Edinburgh during the winter of 1750, have appeared on the covers of past issues of Common Stock (Vol.27 No.2 & Vol.34 No.2) and another, done in London in 1762, is on the cover of this issue. These images are remarkably consistent - the drone configuration is common to all, and in one, these drones have been corrected from the original pencil lines. The image in this issue does not show the chanter, but all the others do - a chanter whose length strongly suggests that it is a pipe of the ‘pastoral or new bagpipe’ type.
The significance of this consistency will hopefully form the subject of an article in the next issue of Common Stock. In the meantime, note the presence of the " Scotch Carp Pit Manufactory" in the engraving on the back cover. I can’t be sure of its significance in this instance, but ‘Scotch carpet’ production was a major enterprise in towns such as Hawick, Sanquhar and Kilmarnock among others in the 18th and early 19th centuries.

In place of our much-loved columnist, Steenie Steenson, who remains mysteriously incommunicado, we offer this note from the British Museum website, which describes the image reproduced in detail on our front cover and in full on the back cover. Note the appearance of the Latin version of ‘Wha daur meddle wi’ me’.

“Satire on Hogarth's support for Lord Bute and his print 'The Times Plate 1'. Hogarth sits on a platform vigorously whitewashing a very large boot lettered "Line of Booty" suspended from a curved post; Hogarth's palette with his line of beauty hangs from a spur on the great boot; a big bucket of whitewash on the platform is labelled "Pension"; the curve of the post is lettered "the precise line"; whitewash splashes Temple, Newcastle, and Pitt who stand below admiring the contents of a little box that Temple is holding, perhaps containing the scroll conferring on Pitt the freedom of the City of London. Pitt holds up his arm to ward off the spray and in doing so obscures the face of a man behind (perhaps intended for John Wilkes) standing next to Charles Churchill who is wearing clerical dress and wielding a big stick. In front of Churchill, beneath the platform, a Scotsman (Tobias Smollett) in a lion's skin stands astride a tub labelled "The Charm/Butifying Wash"; he holds a reversed broom which is also grasped by Arthur Murphy, in Scots garb, bent double; they use the broom shaft to push the Briton and the Auditor (their journals supporting Bute) into the tub. Smollett holds papers lettered "Peace" and "Liberty" and says to Murphy “put in all this twill raise the stench”. To the right, beneath the platform a Scotch bagpiper, a ragged woman scratching and a bare-foot little boy stand watching a dandified ape on horseback carrying a large banner lettered "Intangled by a Thizle / Nemo Me Impune Lac[esset]" showing a dove with a thistle in its beak surrounded by a circle of fleur-de-lis; the ape's approach to St. James’s Palace is barred by the Duke of Cumberland at the head of a troop of soldiers one of whom carries the Royal Standard. In the background on the left is a fine building, the " Scotch Carp Pit Manufactory", from the window of which a herald blows a trumpet with a banner decorated with a dove carrying a thistle and fleur-de-lis; a large banner lettered "The Magic Circle/Design for His M[ajesty" with a crown over a boot surrounded by thistles hangs from a pole projecting from the manufactory. Beneath is etched, "with what judgement ye judge ye shall be judged Matt: Chap 7.2" and in larger letters, "In Justice to Mr. Hogarth the engraver of this Plate: Declares to the Publick. He took the hint of the Butifyer, from a print of Mr Pope White washing Lord Burlingtons Gate, at the same time Bespatring the rest of the Nobility."