A rare first edition of the poems of Robert Burns is expected to fetch around £35,000 when it goes under the hammer in May.
Auctioneers Lyon & Turnbull arranged a recital of Burns works on Monday morning by Burns impersonator Christopher Tait, to celebrate the sale of the edition of his first published poems dating from 1786.
The poems are valued at £25,000-£35,000 and will be sold in Edinburgh on May 2.
There are thought to be only 74 surviving copies of the edition, of which 42 are in universities, 22 in libraries, eight in museums and just 12 copies left in private hands.
Simon Vickers, book specialist at Lyon & Turnbull, said: "After whisky, Scotland's most famous exports are its authors and intellectuals - Sir Walter Scott, Robert Burns and R.L. Stevenson spring immediately to mind.
"But whereas Scott and R.L. Stevenson are famous for a dozen works or more, Burns's reputation the world over rests on a single volume and it nearly never saw the light of day."
The poems were only published thanks to a local lawyer, Gavin Hamilton, who suggested the struggling poet could finance a voyage to Jamaica by publishing some of his poems.
On July 31, 1786, Kilmarnock printer John Wilson published a slim volume of poetry entitled Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect.
Selling for three shillings the entire print-run of 612 copies sold out within a month.
The volume contained much of his most celebrated writing, including The Twa Dogs, Address to the Deil, Halloween, The Cotter's Saturday Night, To a Mouse, Epitaph for James Smith and To a Mountain Daisy, many of which had been written while he was a struggling farmer at Mossgiel farm, near Mauchline in Ayrshire.
Mr Vickers continued: "This is hugely rare, this slim volume has now become a high spot in the world of books, listed in The Grolier Club's One hundred books famous in English literature.
"Our sale on May 2 therefore represents an exceedingly rare opportunity to purchase the most desirable and famous volume of Scottish literature."
There is also an autographed and signed letter, apparently unpublished, from Burns's lover, Agnes M'Lehose, known by Burns's epithet 'Clarinda', to Burns's Dumfries friend John Syme written only six months after the poet's death.
In it Clarinda pleads for the return of her love letters to Burns, protesting that she would never "destroy those precious memorials of an attachment the recollection of which would warm my very soul were it to live till I was four score".