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The Selkirk Grace.
Some hue meat and canna eat, and
some wad eat that want it;
but we hae meat and we can eat,
and sae the Lord be thankit.
Robert Burns (1759-1796)
A Night for All Scots!
If you ever find yourself in Scotland on the night of 25th January, you're in for a treat because this is Burns Night, one of the most important and fun nights of the year! On Burns Night, Scottish people celebrate the life of Robert Burns, Scotland's most famous poet. So what should you expect at a Burns Night supper? Well, it might be formal or informal, but it will always be entertaining!
First of all, the host says a few words to welcome everyone to the supper and opens the meal with a reading of 'The Selkirk Grace'. Guests then stand as a bagpiper pipes music to welcome the star attraction of the supper - the haggis, a sheep's stomach stuffed with the sheep's heart, liver and lungs. Next, an invited reader recites Burns' poem 'To a Haggis’ and cuts open the haggis with a sharp knife. Everyone then toasts the haggis by raising their glasses and shouting: 'To the Haggis!'
The main course is haggis, which is served with 'tatties and neeps' (mashed potatoes and turnip). This is accompanied by the traditional starter, Cock-a-leekie (chicken and leek) soup and a traditional Scottish dessert such as sherry trifle or oatcakes.
The evening always ends with everyone joining hands and singing Burns' world-famous song 'Auld Lang Syne', meaning 'For Times Gone By'.