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Burns Night. Who was Robert Burns? And why do we celebrate his life and poems?

Posted by Katey Rudlin on


Robert Burns, The Scottish Bard was a womaniser, a well renowned poet and yes, sadly also an Robert Burnsexcise man. (Possibly didn't sell enough poems in his lifetime). 

Each year on the 25th January, (his birth date), the works of Robert Burns are used by many the world over, as an extremely valid excuse to have a bit of a shin-dig. 

Celebrations involve a stuffed sheep's stomach, a knife, (dirk), a wild eyed man to stab the said sheep's stomach with the said knife, whilst ranting his way through Burns' "Address to a Haggis", usually with a very bad and indecipherable Scottish accent. All of which is of course accompanied by some fine scotch whisky, which may or may not improve the bad accent.

Note: to avoid the bad accent it is recommended to celebrate in Scotland, although it will probably still be indecipherable to the untrained ear.

Here's some interesting stuff:

  • The perfect whisky for Burn's night at the perfect price
  • 8 Interesting Facts about Robert Burns.
  • Planning a Burns' Night celebration?- your essential Burn's night kit
  • Get the Robert Burn's App for Android or iphone

The perfect whisky for Burn's night at the perfect price

What better Scotch whisky to celebrate Burn's night with than Robert Burns single malt or Robert Burns blend from the isle of Arran distillers? 

Robert Burns Blended Scotch whisky

Robert Burns Blended Scotch WhiskyAt a price even a Scotsman would pay - a steal at $41.30
Tasting Notes:
Colour: Amber-Gold
Aroma: Raspberry and almond tart with hints of toasted oak and toffee.
Palate: Dry and light with hints of sweet apple and liquorice. A subtle hint of peatsmoke appears in the background. 
Finish: Fresh and warming





Robert Burns Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Robert Burns single malt scotch whiskyA true drop of liquid poetry and the perfect dram with which to toast the Bard!
Awesome value at this price - only $57 for a single malt!
Tasting Notes: Colour: Ayrshire Sunshine
Aroma: Sweet & creamy with notes of honey, toffee-glazed pecans and fresh summer fruits
Palate: A perfect combination of rich malt and lush vanilla notes forms a beautifully refreshing and smooth palate. Light and sweet at first followed by tantalising spice and oak
Finish: Clean and fresh with an aftertaste of hazelnuts and milk chocolate.


8 Interesting Facts about Robert Burns

  1. He was right to be big-headed about his work. His skull was measured when his body was exhumed in 1815 to be moved to its new resting place in Dumfries. It was larger than average.
  2. The Soviet Union was the first country to feature Robert Burns on a stamp in 1956 (the 160th anniversary of his death).
  3. He was a bit of a Lothario and fathered 12 children by 4 different women. His youngest son, Maxwell,  was born on the day of his funeral.
  4. Astronaut Nick Patrick took a miniature book of Robert Burns poems into orbit on a two week space mission in 2010.
  5. Michael Jackson was a big fan
  6. American fashion designer, Tommy Hillfiger claims direct descent.
  7. Next to Queen Victoria and Christopher Columbus, there are more statues of Robert Burns than any other non religious icon.
  8. Mucician Bob Dylan claims Robbie Burns' song "A red, red rose" to have been his greatest inspiration.

Your essential Burns Night Kit:

  1. Robert Burns Scotch Whisky - of course
  2. Haggis - available from most good butchers
  3. A good haggis stabbing knife
  4. Neeps and Tatties. - Mashed potatos and mashed yellow fleshed turnip, swede if you're English. Any mashed root veg will do at a pinch
  5. A copy of Robert Burns "Address to a Haggis"
  6. Wild-eyed Scotsman

The Robert Burns App

Available for either iphone or Android.

The app has facts about Robert Burns, a timeline of his life, over 500 Robert Burns poems, including the "Address". Plus a very useful guide to Burns' Suppers, including:

What to eat

What to drink

What music to listen to

What to wear

And of course what to recite.


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