Hogmanay is New Years Eve in Scotland. It is thought to be derived either from the Anglo Saxon Haleg Monath meaning holy month or the gaelic oge maidne meaning new morning.

The traditions of Hogmany have largely died out. It was the tradition for the men to "first foot" all those houses where they knew they would be welcome. Usually the men in question would be tall and dark but the Scots tend to be on the short side so dark and malewould do. They would bring with them a bottle of whiskey, a lump of coal (placed on the host's fire) and black bun. Parties would go on until the early hours of the morning with plenty of dancing and singing.

Long has been the tradition of singing Auld Lang Syne at new year. Robert Burns described it as a song of olden times. He wrote only two of the verses the rest are original and would have been passed down from parent to child. No Hogmanay is complete without it.

Auld Lang Syne

Should auld aquaintence be forgot and never brought to mind should auld aquaintence be forgot and auld lang syne.


For auld lang syne my dear for auld lang syne we'll tak a cup o' kindness yet, for auld lang syne.

And surely ye'll be your pint stowp and surely I'll be mine. And we'll tak a cup o' kindness yet for auld lang syne.

Repeat chourus

We two hae paidled I' the burn, frae morning sun till dine; But seas between us braid hae roar'd sin auld lang syne.

Repeat chorus

And here's a hand my trusty fiere and gie's a hand o' thine and we'll tak a right good willy waught, for auld lang syne.