Uncommon Knowledge: What is “Auld Lang Syne”?

Etched Champagne Flutes | UncommonGoodsThe words of the familiar New Year’s song “Auld Lang Syne” are actually an old Scottish poem. The poet Robert Burns submitted the words to the Scots Musical Museum in 1788, claiming it was a traditional verse and that he simply “took it down from an old man.” Historical evidence suggests, however, that while the first verse is adapted from a 1711 poem, the rest of the words were likely Burns’ own composition. The words “auld lang syne” literally mean “old long since.” It’s the equivalent of saying “long, long ago” or “days gone by,” and is even used in place of “once upon a time” in some Scottish stories.

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Written by Nathan

Nathan is a copywriter, who helps create our product descriptions as well as our weekly emails. He is also a nationally award-winning musical theater writer, whose work includes an adaptation of Lois Lowry’s novel The Giver. Nathan has also been a classical violinist, tutored Kazakhstani jewelers in entrepreneurship, created large-scale games played across entire city blocks, served as a missionary in South Korea, conducted experiments in sonoluminescence, co-founded an exotic fruit-growing business, was a theater critic for Tucson Weekly, and as a teenager composed a women’s jazz quartet that is currently performed around the world.

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