What Is Hogmanay in Scotland?


Quick Answer

In Scotland, Hogmanay refers to the last day of the year and is synonymous with New Years Eve celebrations. Historians believe that the tradition of Hogmanay, and the idea of the importance of celebrating the Winter Solstice, arrived in Scotland with the Vikings in the early eighth and ninth centuries.

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Full Answer

For over 400 years, from the mid 17th century until the 1950s, Scottish people did not celebrate Christmas as a festival. In fact, many Scots worked on Christmas day and had no celebration at all. During this time Hogmanay was the day upon which families and friends gathered together and celebrated and exchanged presents. It is traditional to sing the Scottish folk song "For Auld Lang Syne" immediately following midnight while celebrating Hogmanay.

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