auld lang syne

[ awld lang -zahyn, sahyn ]
/ ˈɔld læŋ ˈzaɪn, ˈsaɪn /

noun Scot. and North England.

old times, especially times fondly remembered.
old or long friendship.



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Origin of auld lang syne

First recorded in 1660–80; from Scots: literally, “old long since,” i.e., “old long-ago (days)”

Words nearby auld lang syne Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for auld lang syne

British Dictionary definitions for auld lang syne

auld lang syne
/ (ˈɔːld læŋ ˈsəɪn, ˈsaɪn, ˈzaɪn) /


old times; times past, esp those remembered with affection or nostalgia

Word Origin for auld lang syne

Scottish, literally: old long since
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for auld lang syne

“Auld Lang Syne”
[ (awld lang zeyen, seyen) ]

A traditional Scottish song, customarily sung on New Year's Eve; the title means “Time Long Past.” The words, passed down orally, were recorded by the eighteenth-century poet Robert Burns. The song begins:

Should auld [old] acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to min'?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.