Robert Burns is Scotland's national bard. You'll hear him referred to as Bobby Burns, Rabbie Burns, and simply The Bard in Scotland.
He is far and away the best known of any poet who wrote in the Scottish language. Some say his English poems have just a touch of Scottish in them but others find even his English to be difficult to understand. In addition to romantic writings he is also known for political commentary that was, at the least, blunt and controversial.
A cult like following started up during the 19th and 20th century. Scots the world over celebrate his birthday, January 25th.
In 2009 he was voted to be "The Greatest Scot" in a poll run by Scottish television.
Who among us does not know at least part of a Robert Burns poem? Think not? Consider New Year's (Hogmanay in Scottish) as we all join in a chorus of Auld Lang Syne. Yes, that is a Robert Burns poem.
As well as making original compositions, Burns also collected folk songs from across Scotland, often revising or adapting them. His Scots Wha Hae served for a long time as an unofficial national anthem of the country. Other poems and songs of Burns that remain well-known across the world today include A Red, Red Rose; A Man's A Man for A' That; To a Louse; To a Mouse; The Battle of Sherramuir; Tam o' Shanter, and Ae Fond Kiss.
Burns was noted as well for his disdain for morality, organized religion, monogamy and ethics.
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