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Archiver > Scotch-Irish > 1998-02 > 0886658014

From: Colleen Eagan <>
Subject: Re: HAGGIS: Recipe for the brave
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 00:53:34 -0500

At 09:22 PM 2/4/98 +0000, you wrote:
>Colleen Eagan wrote:
>> Our Presbyterian Church held a Scots dinner a few years ago in which the
>> haggis was piped in quite ceremoniously at the end of the meal. Is this a
>> true tradition or some affected Americanized version of a Scots tradition?
>> And why would the haggis be piped in, anyway? Is it because it's dessert
>> and the end of the meal, the piece 'de resistance, so to speak?
>> Cheers,
> A 'Scots dinner' seems to be an American development of the Burns
> I will recount one or two things about a Burns Supper, so that you
>can understand why traditionally the Haggis is piped in.
> The most basic - and most enjoyable - Burns Supper which I go to is
>the one run in the local primary School, where the kids in p7, 11 - 12
>year old do it.
> Proceedings begin with the Selkirk Grace. - Some ha'e meat...
> The Haggis is then piped in, and there is the Address to the haggis -
>Fair fa your honest sonsie face Great chieftain o the pudding race.
>... during which the haggis is ceremonially opened with a skiendub.
>The Haggis is then piped out, to reappear on plates, with Swede and
>mashed potatoes.
> There is then a toast the Immortal memory, during which someone gives
>a talk on Burns.
> This is followed by a recitation, a toast to the Lassies, followed by
>a reply, followed by singing ald lang syne.
> At various places songs and dances are worked in.
> Iron Bru, Scotland's other national drink is used.
> A similar form was used at the Church Burns Supper. except that
>someone recited Tam O Shanter - When chapman billies leave the
>street..., and there was a starter of Pate, and a sweet of trifle.
> There are however much more elaborate Burns suppers.
> These can be just about any kind of organization in Scotland. Firms,
>Clubs, Masonic Lodges, Political Party branches, Sports clubs.
> There is a recognized Burns Circuit. with recognized Speakers
>reciters, singers. Some people will do 50+ Burns Suppers per year.
>I do an immortal memory. I will only do one supper a year, because it
>is too hard on
>the liver.
> The form is Always the Selkirk Grace, followed by the address to the
>(piped in and out)
>haggis The Cook and the piper are rewarded with a dram.
> The meal may well consist of Cock O Lekie Soup, the Haggis as an
>entrée, followed by Turkey and trimmings- described as bubbling Jock.
>followed by trifle and perhaps cheese & biscuits
> On the top table whisky will be provided at the rate of a bottle for
>every 3 or 4 guests. there may be wine.
> Part of the hierarchy of speaking is that clearly you will not drink
>until after you have performed (if you have any sense) thus the person
>who has the vote of things for the artists, has a long dry night
>before them.
>The Immortal memory, and lassies are always given, there are other
>possibilities especially the recitations, and songs.
> Some Burns nights are men only, others are mixed. If mixed there may
>be dancing.
> I hope that this helps
>Edward Andrews
>St Nicholas Buccleuch Parish Church Dalkeith
>Visit our Web site
>Wow, Edward,

I think our American dinners have lost something in the translation! So,
it's a Burns Dinner, is it? Well, it sounds delicious. The bubbling Jock
rang a bell in my memory. My father used to call a dish cooked in one pan
as "bubbling squeak." I don't think it was anything like the English bubble
and squeak (if that's correct), but that was our American version. My
children ate my spaghetti dish that I called "bubbling squeak." Well, as I
said, there's a loss in the translation. I've had the Cock O Leekie soup,
too, and like it.

When is your next, yearly performance?


Colleen in Florida

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