Today, January 25th, we celebrate the anniversary of the birth of Robert Burns, with two Burns Suppers at Caledon Loch Avie, in the Duchess of Loch Avie’s wonderful conservatory: one for European audiences beginning at 12 noon SLT, and another at 7pm SLT.
Please come join us for Haggis, Tatties and Neeps and a wee dram of Uisge Beatha (our own Caledon single malt). A Céilidh will follow with dancing till we get tired. A Commemorative Book of Robert Burns will be available to visitors.
Music and audio for the proceedings will be available on the Radio Riel stream, and provided by Her Grace Gabrielle Riel in the first instance, and Edward, Lord Primbroke in the latter.
Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796) is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland, and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best-known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a ‘light’ Scots dialect, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these pieces, his political or civil commentary is often at its most blunt.
He is regarded as a pioneer of the Romantic movement and after his death became an important source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism. A cultural icon in Scotland and among Scots who have relocated to other parts of the world (the Scottish Diaspora), celebration of his life and work became almost a national charismatic cult during the 19th and 20th centuries, and his influence has long been strong on Scottish literature.
Burns Night, effectively a second national day, is celebrated on 25 January with Burns Suppers around the world, and the format has not changed since Robert’s death in 1796. The basic Supper starts with a general welcome and announcements followed by the Selkirk Grace. Immediately after this comes the piping-in of the Haggis, after which Burns’s famous address To A Haggis is read, and the haggis is cut open. The event usually allows for people to start eating just after the haggis is presented. This is when the reading called The Immortal Memory, an overview of Robert’s life and work, is given; the event usually concludes with the singing of Auld Lang Syne. The progress of the Supper is generally accompanied by poetry readings and music on the pipes and other instruments, especially including renderings of works by The Bard of Ayrshire.