“Auld Lang Syne”: A New Years Anthem

New Years means new beginnings, new goals, and a new perspective on life. But, it’s also a time of remembering and reminiscing, and that’s why we sing the traditional song “Auld Lang Syne” every New Years Eve. The lyrics reminisce on the year about to end, celebrating times gone by.


However. While we know the phrase “for auld lang syne” translates to “old long since” or “for old time’s sake”, the origins of the song are a bit of a mystery.

Auld Lang Syne Lyrics and Melody

Unsurprisingly, “Auld Lang Syne” originated as a poem in 1788. For a long time people believed Scottish poet Robert Burns penned the words, but as it turns out, Burns was the first to write down his own version of the poem after hearing it from someone else. Experts believe “Auld Lang Syne” was a combination of the original Scottish poem (a ballad called “Old Long Syne” written in 1711) with some changes made by Burns.

The words are a reminder to celebrate and remember old friendships and wish goodwill for the upcoming year. Here’s an English translation of the words:

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and times gone by?

For old times sake, my dear,
for old times sake,
we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
for old times sake.

And surely you’ll buy your pint cup!
and surely I’ll buy mine!
And we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
for old times sake.


We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since times gone by.


We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dinner time;
But seas between us broad have roared
since times gone by.


And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give me a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for old times sake.


The tune is an old Scottish folk dance. Musicologists have debated for years about what the original melody actually was, but because “Auld Lang Syne” is a folk song, people have been singing the words to various melodies throughout time. And this is the one that stuck. 🙂 Its beautiful, simple lines are easily recognizable, and they help convey the deep emotion associated with the song.

Auld Lang Syne at Celebrations

New Years

“Auld Lang Syne” is typically sung at the end of New Years Eve festivities in English-speaking countries (especially Scotland). However, it wasn’t a New Years Eve tradition until 1929, when musician Guy Lombardo and his band performed “Auld Lang Syne” at midnight at a New Years Eve party. The song was broadcasted on radio and television, and since then people around the world have incorporated it into their New Years Eve celebrations.

Other Occurrences

“Auld Lang Syne” has been translated into many different languages, and people across the world sing it at events like weddings, funerals, and graduations to symbolize endings and new beginnings. What a beautiful way to remember the past and honor the future.

A New Years Anthem

“Auld Lang Syne” is about connecting with others. It’s about loyalty, friendship, love. It’s about optimism for the future and enduring through hard times. So let’s join together in wishing goodbye to 2017 with hope for a new and better year to come.




6 Comments Add yours

  1. phonynonie says:

    Auld Lang Syne also happens to be the solemn melody chosen by many militaries around the globe for taking the last step for passing out of their officer cadets to become the proud commissioned officers and is held in utmost reverence all their lives.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a beautiful thing; thanks for sharing.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. phonynonie says:

        You are welcome. I’m not qualified on the nuances of music but your blog has fired the curiosity to learn. Thanks.

        PS: You can check out my blog…I like to play with words to create different melodies.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you, I’m happy to share what I know!

        I will for sure 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow its soo beautiful 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is very beautiful. I’m happy you like it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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