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Greenland Whale

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The Greenland Whale

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The Greenland Whale

It was seventeen hundred and eighty-four
On March the seventeenth day
We weighed our anchor to our bow
And for Greenland bore away brave boys
And for Greenland bore away

Bold Stevens was our captain's name
Our ship called the Lion so bold
And our poor souls our anchor away
To face the storms and cold brave boys
To face the storms and cold

Oh when we arrived in that cold country
Our goodly ship to moor
We wished ourselves safe back again
With those pretty girls on shore brave boys
With those pretty girls on shore

Our boatswain to the main top stand
With a spyglass in his hand
A whale a whale my lads he cries
And she spouts at every span brave boys
And she spouts at every span

The captain walked the quarter-deck
And a jolly little fellow was he
Overhaul overhaul your davit tackle fall
And we'll launch our boats all three brave boys
And we'll launch our boats all three

There was harpineery and picaneery
And boat steerery also
And twelve jolly tars to tug at the oars
And a-whaling we all go brave boys
And a-whaling we all go

We struck that whale and down she went
By the flourish of her tail
By chance we lost a man overboard
And we did not get that whale brave boys
And we did not get that whale

When this news to our captain came
It  grieved his heart  full sore
And for the loss of a 'prentice boy
It was half mast colors all brave boys
It was half mast  colors  all

It's now cold months is a-coming on
No longer can we stay here
For the winds do blow and the whales do go
And the daylight seldom does appear brave boys
And the daylight seldom does appear

DT #321
Laws K21
From Songs the Whalemen Sang, Huntington
collected from the journal of the Bengal, 1833, kept by
 William Silver of Salem
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III