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Burns Night

   

 

Burns printed in Belfast 1787

Such was the impact of Burns in Ulster that the first edition of his poetry printed outside of Scotland was in Belfast.  The Edinburgh edition appeared in 1787, and James Magee of Bridge Street, Belfast reprinted and republished it in the same year.

 

Burns celebrated in Belfast 1844

In August 1844 Burns’ son Robert visited Belfast, where his recently-widowed daugher Elizabeth Everitt (1812-1878) lived.  An evening celebration was held at the Burns Tavern in Long Lane.  In September Robert Burns Jr was guest of honour at a civic breakfast in the Donegall Arms Hotel, where the Belfast News Letter reported the audience ‘included men of all religious and political classes... all associated together with the utmost cordiality’.

 

Burns centenary in Belfast 1859

The centenary of the poet’s birth was widely celebrated in Ulster.  An oil painting of Burns was commissioned in Belfast and presented to Eliza Burns, the daughter of Robert’s eldest son, who married a Dr Everitt and came to live in Belfast’s York Street.

 

Burns Club founded in Belfast 1872

This was the first Burns Club formed in Ulster and it survives to this day as the Belfast Burns Association.