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Morag Josephine Grant

Published On


Page Range

pp. 161-182

Print Length

21 pages

8. The Song of New Year

Chapter of: Auld Lang Syne: A Song and its Culture(pp. 161–182)
In many parts of the world, but particularly in North America, Auld Lang Syne is now the quintessential song of New Year. But where did this tradition come from, and how was it established? It is often assumed that broadcast media were key here: this chapter demonstrates, however, that the singing of Auld Lang Syne at New Year was established in many quarters before this. This conclusion is reached through an analysis of primary sources, especially newspaper reports, on public New Year’s Eve traditions in Scotland, among the Scottish diaspora in London, and in the USA, in the later nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.