Naval Songs & Ballads - online book

3 Centuries Of Naval History In Shanties & Sea Songs With Lyrics & Notes

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liv            SONGS AND BALLADS
regarded as popular heroes, and the ballad is a parallel to those written later on the mutiny of
A grievance still more often mentioned was
that the food was defective both in quality and quantity. Balthorpe's verse narrative of his cruise in the Mediterranean in 1669-1671 is full of comĀ­plaints. Within a month after leaving England the crew of the St. David were put upon short allowance.
1 What meat before the King for four Allowed, now six men it devour ; A dollar to each man is due, Each twenty-eight days 'tis true : When we can get it we drink wine.'
The wine which the sailors could cheaply procure in the Mediterranean ports compensated for the scantiness of the food :
' A seaman when he gets ashore In one day's time he spendeth more Than three months short allowance money. . . . Their beef and pork is very scant, Fme sure of weight one half it want; A kind of horse beans they do get for pease, No nourishment at all there is in these ; Instead of English cheese or butter A little oyl we get, God wot, far worser. A little rice we get instead of fish Which unto you is known, but a poor dish: Except good sauce to put it in you had, For with good sauce a deal-board is not bad.'
On the coast of Portugal and in the Mediterranean a mixture of wine and water was served out instead of beer. It was commonly spoken of as