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Robert Burns: A Source of Scottish Pride

Around the country and the world tonight, Scots will honour a longstanding tradition of commemorating one of the literary world’s famous poets, Robert Burns.

Robert Burns was born in Ayr in 1759 and went on to become a world-renowned poet and lyricist and famously wrote “Auld Lang Syne” His reach went international, with Abraham Lincoln raising a toast to him posthumously in 1864; the USSR naming him a “People’s Poet” and, he inspired the legendary Bob Dylan.

Robert Burns wrote on a wide range of themes, including republicanism, radicalism and poverty. Poetry and the arts are excellent outlets to express oneself and can be used to express all sorts of emotions.

Unfortunately, Robert Burns passed away at the young age of 37 in 1796. It is thought he had a rheumatic heart condition. Robert Burns’ words remain immortal to this day.

Hamish MacDonald, the Scots Scriever from 2015-2017, wrote this poem about Contaminated Blood. Warning: This video is pretty hard-hitting, but does a powerful job in evoking some of the feelings experienced by the community in the wake of the scandal.

How are you spending Burns Night? Do you have a favourite poet or poem? Feel free to let us know in the comments below.

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