Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 1

Ancient Songs, Ballads, & Dance Tunes, Sheet Music & Lyrics - online book

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ILLUSTRATING! SHAKESPEARE.                                         233
" An old song on the Spanish Armado," called, also, in Pills to purge Melan­choly, " Sir Francis Drake : or Eighty-eight." To the same tune. (The words from Westminster Drollery, 1672.)
Some years of late, in eighty-eight,                       Their men were young, munition strong,
■ As I do well remember;                                         And to do us more harm-'a,
It was, some say, the nineteenth of May,               They thought it meet to join their fleet,-
And some say in September.                                  All with the Prince of Parma.
The Spanish train, launch'd forth amain,              They coasted round about our land,
With many a fine bravado,                               . And so came in to Dover;
Their (as they thought, but it proved not)            But we had men, set on them then,
Invincible Armado.                                                And threw the rascals over.
There was a little man that dwelt in Spain,            The Queen was then at Tilbury, Who shot well in a gun-a,                                      What could we more desire-a,
Don Pedro hight, as black a wight                        And Sir Francis Drake, for her sweet sake, As the Knight of the Sun-a.                                   Did set them all on fire-a.
King Philip made him admiral,                              Then straight they fled by sea and land, And bid him not to stay-a,                                     That one man kill'd three score-a;
But to destroy both man and boy,                         And had not they all run away, And so to come away-a.                                         In truth he had kill'd more-a.
Their navy was well victualled                              Then let them neither brag nor boast, With biscuit, pease, and bacon;                             But if they come again-a,
They brought two ships well fraught with whips,    Let them take heed they do not speed, But I think they were mistaken.                            As they did, you know when-a.
This tune, which waa discovered by Sir John Hawkins, "in a MS. as old as Shakespeare's time," and printed in Steevens' edition of Shakespeare, is also con­tained in " The Second Booke of Ayres, some to sing and play to the Base-Violl alone: others'to be sung to the Lute and Base-Violl," &c, by W. Corkine, fol. 1612.
In act iii., sc. 1, of The Merry Wives of Windsor, 1602, Sir Hugh Evans sings the following lines, which form part of the song:— " To shallow rivers, to whose falls
Melodious birds sing madrigals;
There will we make our beds of roses,
And a thousand fragrant posies." In MarloVs tragedy, The Jew of Malta, written in or before 1591, he introduces the first lines of the song in the following manner:—
" Thou, in whose groves, by Dis above,
Shall live with me and be my love." In England's Helicon, 1600, it is printed with the name " Chr. Marlow " as the author. It is also attributed to Marlow in the following passage from Walton's Angler, 1653:—" It was a handsome milkmaid, that had not attained so much age and wisdom as to load her mind with any fears of many things that will never be, as too many men often do; but she cast away all care and sung like a nightin­gale : her voice was good, and the ditty fitted for it: it was that smooth song which was made by Kit. Marlow, now at least fifty years ago."

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III