Tag Archives: New Year

Auld Lang Syne

Our brave editor and chief at Rebel Ink Press posted this last night on our Yahoo group. Her observations about the history of the phrase, Auld Lang Syne. I quote her and wish all of you a happy, prosperous new year.

” “Auld Lang Syne” is a Scots poem written by Robert Burns in 1788 and set to the
tune of a traditional folk song (Roud #6294). It is well known in many
countries, especially (but far from exclusively) in the English-speaking world;
its traditional use being to celebrate the start of the New Year at the stroke
of midnight. By extension, it is also sung at funerals, graduations and as a
farewell or ending to other occasions. The international Boy Scout youth
movement, in many countries, uses it as a close to jamborees and other

The song’s Scots title may be translated into English literally as “old long
since,” or more idiomatically, “long long ago,” “days gone by” or “old times.”
Consequently “For auld lang syne,” as it appears in the first line of the
chorus, is loosely translated as “for (the sake of) old times.”

The phrase “Auld Lang Syne” is also used in similar poems by Robert Ayton
(1570–1638), Allan Ramsay (1686–1757), and James Watson (1711) as well as older
folk songs predating Burns. The phrase “In the days of auld lang syne” if often
used as the equivalent of “Once upon a time…” in the retelling of fairy tales
in the Scots language.”

Blessed be to you and yours in 2012