25 January: Burns Night – a celebration of romanticist Robert Burns

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Each year on 25 January romanticists celebrate the birthday of Scottish poet Robert Burns with a ‘Burns Night.’

Robert Burns (1759-1796), the Bard of Ayrshire, was born on 25 January. He is Scotland’s national poet and lyricist, and is celebrated worldwide as a pioneer of the Romantic movement. In 2009 he was chosesn as the greatest Scot by the Scottish public in a television vote.

Burns is best remembered for the song ‘Auld Lang Syne’ which is song on 31 December – New Year’s Eve (Hogmanay). Other famous poems include ‘A Red, Red Rose,’ ‘To a Mouse,’ ‘To a Louse,’ and ‘A Man’s a Man for A’ That.’

To commemorate his birthday, people have a Burns Night or Burns Supper Night. This generally includes a haggis – while reciting the Burn’s poem ‘Address to a Haggis’ (1787).

Haggis is a pudding or pie made from minced sheep offal – heart, liver, and lungs. The minced offal is mixed with onion, oats, suet, and spices, encased in the animal’s stomach or artificial bag.

Haggis is usually served with vegetables and mashed potatoes, and toasted with a glass of Scotch whiskey.

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