Auld Lang Syne
by Robert Burns
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and days of auld lang syne?
For auld lang syne, my dear, for auld lang syne,
We'll take a cup o' kindness yet
For auld lang syne.
"Auld Lang Syne" is a Scottish poem written by Robert Burns in 1788 and set to the tune of a traditional folk song (Roud # 6294). It is well-known in many English-speaking countries, and it is often sung to celebrate the start of the new year at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Day.
The song's (Scots) title may be translated into English literally as "old long since", or more idiomatically, "long long ago" or "days gone by". The phrase "Auld Lang Syne" is also used in similar poems by Robert Ayton (1570–1638), Allan Ramsay (1686-1757) and James Watson (1711) as well as older folk songs predating Burns. In his retelling of fairy tales in the Scots language, Matthew Fitt uses the phrase “In the days of auld lang syne” as the equivalent of “Once upon a time.” In Scots syne is pronounced like the English word sign — IPA: [sain] — not [zain] as many people pronounce it. The last line of the chorus is frequently mis-sung by crowds and untrained groups as "for the sake of Auld Lang Syne". This is partly because the words themselves are not understood, but also because it has become common practice. It is rarely, if ever, incorrectly performed by trained choirs." (Wikipedia: )