Music Of The Waters - online book

Sailors' Chanties, Songs Of The Sea, Boatmen's, Fishermen's,
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MUSIC OF THE WATERS.                 307
all the way up to Dibrugarh, the head-waters of the Brahmaputra, which go up amongst the Himalayas. The monotonous chant—for such it is of the leadsman—" Teen bom milla ne," or " Three fathoms and no bottom," deserves> I think, to be mentioned, if only to commend the patience with which it is almost unceasingly repeated for the three thousand miles of the voyage. The measuring is first done by inches, " hart" or eighteen inches, this is three times counted, and then " hart" or inches is changed to fathoms.
« Sarra "—Half.
" Ek to bom "—One fathom.
" Do to bom "—Two fathoms.
and then " Three fathoms and no bottom "—" Teen bom milla ne/'
This is chanted by one man, who is relieved every few hours—a fact I was glad to learn.
The flats generally have on board forty sailors or " Lascars," the " Sarang" or native captain, the " Secunna" or quartermaster, and a European commander.
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