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Robert Burns' legacy lauded

25th January 2010

Scottish politicians have highlighted the contribution that poet Robert Burns has made to the world's cultural scene.

Marking Burns Day 2010, first minister Alex Salmond, education secretary Michael Russell and children's and early years minister Adam Ingram claimed that the poet is as relevant today as ever.

Mr Salmond said that generations of readers across the globe have enjoyed Burns' work and called on people to think about his legacy today, as Scotland celebrates the poet's birthday.

'It's important that on the 251st anniversary of the Bard's birth we reflect on the immense contribution that the poet has made and continues to make in shaping Scottish culture and promoting Scotland to an international audience,' he added.

Mr Russell also pointed out that Burns' canon influences the language, culture, heritage and education of Scotland to this day, while Mr Ingram said the poet's genius is demonstrated by the fact that his 18th-century works are still relevant in the early 21st century.

At a recent debate at the Celtic Connections festival in Glasgow, culture minister Fiona Hyslop argued that Scotland's cultural world would be strengthened if the country was granted independence.

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