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A cup of kindness for an American: Burns night

It’s that time of year again. Time to bring out the haggis, neeps, and tatties. Time to celebrate Oidhche na Taigeise. For those unfamiliar with Gaelic: Burns Night, the traditional supper commemorating Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns.  Now, to those not born in Alba, such as my Yankee self, this celebration may seem to be […]

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Culture Literature

Poetry in Motion: The Legacy of Robert Burns

On Monday 25th January, Scotland celebrated Burns Night. Haggis was cooked, Buckfast was poured and the ephemeral words of Scotland’s most famous poet, Robert Burns, were recited. Each year, on the anniversary of his birth, the self-evident national bard is commemorated over tatties and neeps, paired with the reading of his iconic works. Having been […]

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Burns Night: a kitsch memorial worth celebrating

Let’s be honest, Burns Night is terribly sentimental and garish. The pipes, the haggis, the emotional recitations and reflections, the kilts, the flags — all these things are an evocation of an invented Scottish tradition, one which isn’t apparent in the ordinary lives of most of us Scots. It is also deeply ahistorical. Robert Burns, […]

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Culture Literature

Burns & Beyond: the world celebrates a Scottish literary icon

Every year on  25 January, glasses are raised the world over in remembrance of ‘Rabbie’ Burns, the Ploughman Poet. The Bard of Ayrshire holds a special place in the hearts of many, as does his body of work. An icon of the Romantic period, and an inspiration to writers and social revolutionaries alike. His folk […]

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Lifestyle What's On

Get yer sonsie face on: celebrating Burns Night in Edinburgh

“Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face, Great chieftain o the puddin’-race!” The opening lines of Robert Burns’ ‘Address to a Haggis’ will be repeated across Scotland on 25 January to mark Burns Night (or Burns Nicht in traditional Scots). Burns Night is the celebration of Scottish poet Robert Burns, one of Scotland’s most revered cultural […]

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Culture Literature

Keara Murphy: The Bard and I

25 January has long since marked the day when the life and works of Scottish poet Robert Burns is celebrated. Whilst Keara Murphy’s ‘The Bard and I’ participated in this tradition, it also used less frequently discussed aspects of his work to present them in a new light. Murphy, a playwright and comedian, debuted her play […]

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Remembering Burns

Today marks the birth of one of the most well-known romantic writers of all time, Robert Burns, or ‘Rabbie’ as he is affectionately known in Scotland. Perhaps romance is not what you would usually associate Burns with, but we only need to look at the end of When Harry met Sally to support this claim. […]

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Lifestyle What's On

The best ways to celebrate Burns Day in Edinburgh

Burns Day is the annual Scottish celebration of Scotland’s national poet, Robert (Rabbie) Burns; held on his birthday, it commemorates his life and work. Burns is thought of as the National Poet of Scotland, and he is best known for his works Auld Lang Syne, Scots Wha Hae and A Red, Red Rose. On this […]