CAIRN, n. A kind of sepulchre which it is no sacrilege to rifle.
This, by the way, is a peculiarity of all ancient tombs, and the learned Dr. Berosus Huggyns (1561) gives it as his opinion that an unknown grave may be plundered without sin in the interest of knowledge as soon as the bones have done “smellynge” — the soul being then all exhaled.
“The holy dead,” said he (nor stayed
His shovel, apprehensive)
“Are not offended by my trade,
Unless themselves offensive.”
He dug — then held his nose and fled,
With penitent misgiving;
They were, indeed, “the wholly dead,”
But their bouquet was living!