Music Of The Waters - online book

Sailors' Chanties, Songs Of The Sea, Boatmen's, Fishermen's,
Rowing Songs, & Water Legends with lyrics & sheet music

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xxvi                     Introduction.
in fact, an inheritance which the nation will never, it is to be hoped, undervalue.
Whatever form naval warfare may hereafter assume, however the technicalities of the maritime profession may be altered, the spirit of the British seaman will be un­changed, he will be the same hearty, fearless, generous and simple being that Dibdin describes him, loving his country and his flag, reverencing his ship whether propelled by wind or steam, and adoring his Kate or Nancy.
Not only are Dibdin's songs popular with seamen, but they have obtained a deep hold on the national heart. There are few, I think, who are not familiar with some at least of them, fewer who have not heard and admired the pathos of " Tom Bowling," perhaps the most perfect of the many hundred songs left us by this great master of the art of writing of the sea. " Poor Jack," and " 'Twas in the good Ship," are also great forecastle favourites, mixed up as they are with frequent quaint technical phrases and expressions, rendering them perfectly characteristic and inimitable, and expressing such thoroughly wise, brave, and gentle sentiments. There is another song, " I'm the Pirate of the Isles," a most thrilling tale of the genuine Pirate of the Isle of Pines, the terror of the Spanish Main, and one that always draws the sympathy and rouses the interest of a forecastle audience.
But the songs that Jack loves best, the songs that are sung with a will, whether by old or young, are the ones that have for theme " His Nancy," and, whether sailing away with the fresh memory of her last good-bye ringing in his ears, or homeward-bound with the eager thought of the welcome that will be his, she is never far from his thoughts. The sailors' favourite expression, rude though






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