Burns Night Quiz | Food, drink and Robert 'Rabbie' Burns

by 24britishtvJan. 25, 2023, 7 p.m. 15
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January has few things going for it, but Burns Night is one. In the midst of the endless, dreich misery, comes an evening of celebration, with Haggis, neeps, tatties and dram or two of whisky.

There is a man we have to thank for generously lending his name and birthdate to said evening. Robert ‘Rabbie’ Burns is commonly held as Scotland’s national bard, his works spanning the Scots language, Scots dialect and English. His name continues to hold an increasingly mystical significance across Scotland and the wider world, but how much do you know about the late, great poet, and the celebrations that now mark the 25th January?

Answers are at the bottom!

1) The 25th January is celebrated as Burns night, commemorating the birthday of the Scottish bard, but in what year was Burns born?

2) In what Scottish town was Robert Burns born?

3) What was the profession of Burns’ father? After his father’s death, Burns himself would briefly, and not very succesfully, follow in his footsteps.

4) Other than poetry, what career did Robert Burns eventually settle on for himself?

5) His first poetry collection was published when Burns was 27 years old. What was it called?

6) In 1787, Burns wrote a poem beginning: “Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face, great chieftain o’ the puddin-race!” It is titled ‘Address to ___’?

7) A Burns Night supper traditionally starts with a soup course, Cullen Skink often being the chosen dish, but from which fish is the Scottish soup made?

8) Well known for his fondness for women, Burns has been latterly described as something of a ‘rural casanova’. Nonetheless, he was eventually tamed – in theory, at least – when he married which lady in 1788?

9) Burns famously addressed a poem to an animal. What was it?

10) One of Burns’ most famous works is now best known as a song. What is it?

11) Ever the romantic, he once wrote a famous ‘love lament’ with the which flower in the title?

12) His wife was known to have eight children. How many is Burns believed to have fathered?

13) In the late 19th century, a first edition copy of Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect was found in a shop. The shopkeeper, oblivious to its worth, used it as spare paper and ripped pages out, until a passerby spotted the book and bought it. But what kind of shop was it?

14) Which famous musician cited Robert Burns as his biggest inspiration?

15) How old was Robert Burns when he died?

16) The first Burns Night supper was held in memoriam at the Burns Cottage, how many years after the poet’s death?

17) A prayer Burns wrote has become commonplace before eating on Burns Night. It goes:

And some wad eat that want it,

But we hae meat and we can eat,

Sae let the Lord be Thankit!

But what is the prayer called?

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