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Lyr Add: Auld Lang Syne

AULD LANG SYNE (original)

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GUEST,Oldtimer 31 Dec 05 - 11:38 PM
Kaleea 31 Dec 05 - 11:53 PM
Muttley 01 Jan 06 - 05:29 AM
masato sakurai 01 Jan 06 - 09:39 AM
Leadfingers 01 Jan 06 - 10:41 AM
masato sakurai 01 Jan 06 - 10:55 AM
Bonecruncher 01 Jan 06 - 08:36 PM
GUEST,Anonny Mouse 01 Jan 06 - 08:53 PM
Muttley 02 Jan 06 - 12:08 AM
Hrothgar 02 Jan 06 - 06:42 AM
GUEST,Joe_F 02 Jan 06 - 09:03 PM
GUEST,Robert Burns 24 Dec 10 - 02:39 PM
Jim Dixon 29 Dec 10 - 11:36 AM
GUEST,Dave Rado 03 Jan 12 - 11:49 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: AULD LANG SYNE
From: GUEST,Oldtimer
Date: 31 Dec 05 - 11:38 PM

Still time to whip out your guitars and mandos and croon this obscure little Scottish tune that no one seems to truly know the meaning of or anything beyond verse one. So boys and girls here you go. If you're reading this in 2006, print it and save it for next year.
AULD LANG SYNE--Words adapated from a traditional song by Rabbie Burns (1759-96)

1.Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We'll tak a cup of kindness yet,
For auld lang syne!

2.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!

3.We twa hae run about the braes,
And pou'd the gowans fine,
But we've wander'd monie a weary fit,
Sin auld lang syne.

4.We twa hae paidl'd in the burn
Frae morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid hae roar'd
Sin auld lang syne.

5.And there's a hand my trusty fiere,
And gie's a hand o thine,
And we'll tak a right guid-willie waught,
For auld lang syne

Meanings: (becha didn't know them all)
auld lang syne - times gone by
be - pay for
braes - hills
braid - broad
burn - stream
dine - dinner time
fiere - friend
fit - foot
gowans - daisies
guid-willie waught - goodwill drink
monie - many
morning sun - noon
paidl't - paddled
pint-stowp - pint tankard
pou'd - pulled
twa - two

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: Kaleea
Date: 31 Dec 05 - 11:53 PM

"ALL" may get you more than you might imagine. I'm betting that there are a few 'Catters who know tons more lyrics--parodies & add-ons.

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Subject: Lyr Add: AULD LANG SYNE
From: Muttley
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 05:29 AM

G'day 'oldtimer' and all others. The rendering of 'All the Lyrics' was a good one, but this version with (if one looks closely - the more 'correct' spellings - pu't instead of pou'd, mony instead of monie and stoup intead of stowp) are taken from my 1880's, leatherbound, Scottish copy of ALL of Burns works: Poems; Juvenile Poems; Epistles; Ballads; Political Ballads; Songs; Satires; Epitaphs, Epigrams, Extempore Poems, Etc & 'Remarks on Scottish Songs and Ballads'.

The most notable difference between 'oldtimers' version and this one is the placement of the verse beginning - "And surely you'll be your pint-stoup ......". O/T places it as the second verse while Burns himself placed it as the last!

I've also reduced the "translations" to those less well-known and omitted the better-known words.

So here, based on a publication over 120 years old and published less than 100 years after 'The Great Poet's' passing is (one would expect) the original version of "All the Lyrics" to Auld Lang Syne.

                                                                Robbie Burns

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to min'?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And days o' lang syne?

                For auld lang syne, my dear,
                    For auld lang syne,
                We'll tak a cup of kindness yet,
                    For auld lang syne?

We twa hae run about the braes,
And pu't the gowans fine;
But   we've wander'd mony a weary foot,
Sin auld lang syne.

We twa ha'e paidl't I' the burn
Frae morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid ha'e roared
Sin auld lang syne.

And there's a hand my trustie fiere,
And gie's a hand o' thine,
And we'll tak a right guid willie-waught,
For auld lang syne

And surely ye'll be your pint-stoup,
And surely I'll be mine,
And we'll tak' a cup o' kindness yet,
For auld lang syne!

auld lang syne - Long times since
be - pay for
dine - dinner time
fiere - friend
gowans - daisies
guid willie-waught - draught
mony - many
morning sun - noon
paidl't - paddled
pint-stoup - pint tankard
pu't - pulled


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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: masato sakurai
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 09:39 AM

Oldtimer's version is from The Scots Musical Museum (no. 413, 1796), while Muttley's is from George Thomson's Scottish Airs (no. 66, 1799), which Burns had sent him in a letter. Both versions are included in James Dick's The Songs of Robert Burns (1903; rpt. Folklore Associates, 1962, pp. 208-209) and Donald A. Low's The Songs of Robert Burns (Routledge, 1993, pp. 311-312). As is well known, the SMM version was set to a completely different tune.

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: Leadfingers
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 10:41 AM

Does any one else get all bitter and twisted with the people who persist in singing "For the Sake of Auld Lang Syne" ??

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: masato sakurai
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 10:55 AM

On "For the sake of auld lang syne," there's a related thread:

Auld Lang Syne - folk process?

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: Bonecruncher
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 08:36 PM

And how many people are able to sing the British National Anthem with the words of the usual first, third and fifth verses?

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: GUEST,Anonny Mouse
Date: 01 Jan 06 - 08:53 PM

Yeah-and how many of you can sing "Oh, Canada" with gusto at a Habs game, eh?

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: Muttley
Date: 02 Jan 06 - 12:08 AM

Corrections accepted! I guess it doesn't matter which way it's sung as long as the sentiment remains!

As for the National Anthems - like Australia's - who cares? The words are probably not the originals - as with Australia's ("Australians all . . . etc"   which was originally written as "Australia's Sons . . . etc".
And I know the second is the original because my adopted Great Uncle wrote the bloody thing.

However, what IS interesting is that 90%+ Austrlians know ONLY the first verse - aske 'em to sing the second and their usual response is "There's another verse?????"

As well, I also find it interesting that more Canadians know the full US anthem than they do of their own and more Americans know more of the Canadian one than they do their own!!!! Can't recall where I got that little bit of trivia from - but I'm assured it's correct.


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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: Hrothgar
Date: 02 Jan 06 - 06:42 AM

There was a man called Mr Lang
And he had a neon sign
And Mr Lang is very old
So they called it "Old Lang's Sign."

From the singing of Allan Sherman?

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Subject: RE: ALL the Lyrics to 'Auld Lang Syne'
From: GUEST,Joe_F
Date: 02 Jan 06 - 09:03 PM

On mules we find two legs behind,

and two we find before,

We stand behind before we find

what the two behind be for.

When we're behind the two behind,

we find what these be for,

So stand before the two behind,

behind the two before.

--- Joe Fineman

||: Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil. :||

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Auld Lang Syne
From: GUEST,Robert Burns
Date: 24 Dec 10 - 02:39 PM

Burns' wrote guid willie-waught which is his error, as is shown in his hand-penned manuscript.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Auld Lang Syne
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 29 Dec 10 - 11:36 AM

I had no idea what the last guest was talking about, so I looked it up:

From Notes and Queries, 4th series, Volume 7, May 6, 1971, page 386:

Burns.—Ten years ago, one of your correspondents elicited certain fine stanzas which had "escaped the notice of all the recent editors of Burns' Poems" (2nd S. xi. 307). I wish to call attention to a stereotyped blunder perpetrated by all these editors, so far as I know, in "Auld Lang Syne." Thus—
"We'll tak a richt gude-willie waucht,"—
is invariably printed "gude willie-waught."

Now it may be excusable in Mr. Micawber to be ignorant of the nature of gowans; but an editor of Burns should know that gude-willie or gude-willet (vide Jamieson, sub voce) means good-willed or cordial, and waucht a draught; and "gude-willie waucht" means a hearty drink; while "gude willie-waught" has no meaning whatever.

Every Scotchman to whom I have mentioned this has received it with surprise, and I myself long blindly accepted the error, which needs only to be pointed out in "N. & Q." that it may be corrected in future.

W. T. M.


Ibid, June 10, 1871, page 502:

(4th S. vii. 386.)

Not one of the numerous editors of Burns, and not one of his annotators, so far as I can see, have properly set up in type this familiar expression, which occurs nowhere else in Scottish song except in the world-famous "Auld Lang Syne" of Burns, "taken down from the singing of an old man."

It is a matter of very small moment whether the common Scotch word "waucht" be spelled with c or g. I would prefer the c in this and similar words, as showing the more ancient style; but either way is quite proper. I might go over the whole alphabet, and select from each letter a word in the Scottish dialect with the same guttural sound, which may be spelled by using either ch or gh. For instance, auchty or aughty for eighty, bauchle-shoon or baughle-shoon for shoes worn out of shape, claucht or claught for caught hold of, dicht or dight for wipe up, faucht or faught for fought, and so on. The word loch, signifying lake, is often spelled lough, and the proper name Lachlan or McLachlan is just as often spelled Laughlan or McLaughlan.

My present object in writing is to point out to your readers that there is no such word in the Scottish dialect as "Willie-waucht." True, it is invariably found so printed in all existing editions of Burns, including even that of the critical Dr. Hately Waddell; but this only shows how very ignorant modern Scotchmen are regarding the ancient dialect of their country. Had Burns lived to edit the printing of his own song, "Auld Lang Syne," the word "willie-waucht" would never have been seen nor heard tell of. It is not to be found in Jamieson's Scottish Dictionary. The word "waucht or waught," a copious drink, will be found there; and the word "gudewillie," with a good will, is there also. A "good-willie waught" therefore means a copious libation, taken with good will. The great error of editors and printers lies in absurdly placing the connecting hyphen between willie and waucht instead of between gude and willie. If an Englishman were to express in writing that he took a "willing drink" or a "hearty drink" of generous liquor on some happy occasion, he would never connect these words like Siamese twins, as printers have hitherto done in recording this rich phrase of Burns—"Gudewillie waught." In like manner it is perfectly unnecessary—nay, it is an error to do so in transcribing the phrase either in Scottish or German.

I have been favoured with a glance at the proof sheets of an edition of Burns shortly to proceed from the press of Mr. James M'Kie of Kilmarnock, and I am happy to say that the poet's happy phrase, which forms the subject of this note, is there correctly printed.

I may state that in Johnson's Museum, where "Auld Lang Syne" first made its appearance a few months after the poet's death, the phrase is printed thus—"right gude-willie-waught." This is better than the usual rendering, but the last hyphen is a printer's error calculated to mislead the reader. The Scottish epithet "ill-willie," used as a prefix to man, woman, bairn, dog, &c., is quite as common as its converse "gude-willie."

Wm. S. Douglas.

I hardly think any Scot could mistake the meaning of "gude-willie waucht," however printed. In a general way English people neither understand nor try to understand vernacular Scotch. "He's rale gude willie" (he is really good-hearted) is a most common form of expression in the Lowlands of Scotland, and most persons born north of the Tweed know that "a gude waucht," without the intermediate term "willie," means a hearty drink. "Gude-willie waucht" suggests something more. It means a hearty drink accompanied with jovial feelings; in the slang of the day "awfully jolly," overflowing with a sort of drunken kindness engendered in those who having imbibed rather more than sufficient are disposed to be friendly with every body. Men become sentimental as the blood circulates with greater rapidity. "Auld Lang Syne" was seldom sung until "after men had well drunk," and just before the company broke up.

J. Ck. R.

"W. T. M.'s communication having been quoted into the Glasgow Herald, I replied to it at some length there in the first instance, and now beg very briefly to sum up the facts of the case for the information of your correspondent: —

1. There were originally three MS. copies of "Auld Lang Syne," in the hands respectively of Johnson, Thomson, and Currie. In their several editions the phrase stands thus—"gude-willie-waught," "gude-willie-waught," "gude willie-waught." In Thomson's second edition, 1821, he seems to have revised his former reading, and adopted Currie's; at least I find the words quoted from him as they were printed by Currie, "gude willie-waught." Whether the original MSS. agree or differ on this point, not having seen them, I cannot say; but these editions are the only public authorities we now have to rely upon, and although one editor might give a wrong reading, two would not, three could not.

2. Jamieson has been misquoted by your correspondent W. T. M. to some extent; and Jamieson himself has misquoted Burns. The extent of the misquotation may be ascertained on reference.

3. There are such words in Scotch as "ill-willie," "ill-deedie," &c., but no such word as "gude-willie." "Ill" is an adverb, and may be conjoined as above with adjectives; "gude" is an adjective itself, pure and simple, and cannot, or at least should not, be so conjoined with another adjective, as "willie" is. Burns certainly would not have committed such an error: and if any MS. of his should seem to justify that reading, it must have been, I should think, by mere accident.

4. "Willie," as an adjective, combined with "waught" indicates the strongest will or determination to drink. "Hearty" is, perhaps, the only English word we have for it; but it means far more than hearty, and its combination with "waught" is perfectly legitimate.

5. W. T. M. writes "richt" and "waucht" improperly. Burns did not use the letter c in such words; he knew the power of his own language, in all its details, better.

These being the simple facts of the case, I think proper to submit them in reply to W. T. M.; but beg leave, once for all, to decline any controversy on the subject, more especially with an anonymous correspondent.

P. Hately Waddell.
Elmgrove Place, Glasgow.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Auld Lang Syne
From: GUEST,Dave Rado
Date: 03 Jan 12 - 11:49 AM

I think the comparisons some posters have made to people not knowing most of the verses of various national anthems, or to the lyrics of traditional unattributed folk songs changing over time, are inappropriate in this case, because Burns is not a simply "known and well respected" (to quote from one of the posts above) - he is generally regarded as being among the ten or so greatest poets of all time, and he is regarded by many as the greatest writer of song lyrics of all time. As such, messing with his lyrics is akin to misquoting Shakespeare.

And in the case of Auld Lang Syne, most of the changes that have been made to his original have completely altered the tone and meaning of the song from that intended by Burns. By singing only the first and last verses (or sometimes, only singing the first verse), and omitting the rest, it makes it appear to be an up-beat, optimistic song - whereas the complete song is very wistful, and should therefore, I think, be sung at a slower tempo than it normally is these days.

And the original line "For auld lang syne, my jo" (meaning "my sweetheart" or literally, "my joy") is much more intimate than "For auld lang syne, my dear" which is usually sung today.

The original is a wistful and nostalgic song in which the poet, meeting up again with his childhood sweetheart, reminisces about how close they once were, and reflects a little sadly on how they have ploughed separate, hard and lonely furrows since then. For the sake of their former happy times together, he invites her to share a drink with him and to reminisce.

That is not the tone or meaning that most people would think it had as they listen to the greatly shortened and slightly amended lyrics that are usually sung today, generally sung to an up-tempo, optimistic beat. All the subtlety and wistfulness of the original is lost.

One other thing (appropos one of the posts above): the people of Scotland are Scots, or Scotsmen - not "Scotch" or "Scotchmen". Scotch refers only to the whisky, not to the people. And there is no such word as "Scotchmen".

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