Robert Burns app features poems, biography and a Burns Supper guide

Robert Burns app features poems, biography and a Burns Supper guide

iPhone app to launch Robert Burns Birthplace Museum opening

A free Robert Burns iPhone app, which includes over 550 poems and love songs by the poet and bard, has been created by the Scottish Government. Burns is renowned for being Scotland's greatest cultural icon and is celebrated worldwide. He is best known for writing in the Scots language, but much of his poems are also in English with a Scots dialect, making them more accessible to an audience around the world.

The launch coincides with the opening of the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum on Friday and with Burns Night, celebrated wordwide on 25 January. The new app will make it easier to access the classics poems such as To a Mouse, A Man's a Man for 'a That and Auld Lang Syne as well as an extensive database of everything else Burns ever produced.

Scotland's Culture Minister Fiona Hyslop said:

"His legacy is of incalculable value to Scotland and the country’s image abroad. This app uses the very latest technology to bring Burns firmly into the 21st century, with his enduring messages of human equality and international brotherhood now available to iPhone users the world over."

"This app will appeal to existing admirers of Burns and make his poetry available to a whole new audience. It is a great platform to promote his work on the international stage"

The Burns Supper is a 200-year-old tradition that commemorates the poet's life and work. It began as a ritual performed by his close friends a couple of years after his death in 1796 as a tribute. A typical informal celebration would include a serving of haggis (a traditional Scottish dish), Scotch whisky and a recital of a variety of his poems, including his Address To a Haggis during the serving of the dish. More formal events may include speakers delivering toasts and speeches, traditional Scottish music and a piper playing whilst guests arrive.

For those unsure of how to host a Burns Supper, the app includes a full guide to what accompanies the haggis dish, the type of music to play, clothing to wear, what poems are traditionally recited and more. To learn more about the life of Burns there is a biography and helpful visual timeline of the poet. There is also a glossary of terms for those who are struggling with the Scottish terms or are simply interested in the way he uses language.

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