The Story Behind “Auld Lang Syne”

The words for “Auld Lang Syne” come from a Robert “Rabbie” Burns Scottish poem written in 1788, though he claimed to have written it down from an elderly man -an “old song” of “olden times.” It is a song of nostalgic memories. The poem’s title may be translated into English as “old long since” or it might be loosely translated as “for the sake of old times.”

Today, the song is sung to celebrate momentous occasions, in particular to celebrate the New Year. The traditional music for the song comes from an old Scots folk song.

The standard English lyrics are copied below (rather than the thick Scots and Rabbie Burns lyrics):

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and auld lang syne?

    Chorus:

    For auld lang syne, my dear,
    for auld lang syne,
    we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
    for auld lang syne.

And surely you’ll buy your pint cup!
and surely I’ll buy mine!
And we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

Chorus

We two have run about the hills,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since auld lang syne.

Chorus

We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared
since auld lang syne.

Chorus

And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give me a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for auld lang syne.

Chorus

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s