Naval Songs & Ballads - online book

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

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248          SONGS AND BALLADS
See Keppel's flag once more display'd; upon the deck he stands; Old England's glory ne'er can fade or tarnish in his hands. So a-cruising we will go, etc.
Be England to herself but true, to France defiance hurl'd, Give peace, America, with you, and war with all the world. And a-cruising we will go, etc.
Come, all ye jolly sailors bold,
Whose hearts are cast in honour's mould,
While British glory I unfold
Huzza to the Arethusa ! She is a frigate tight and brave As ever stemm'd the dashing wave :
Her men are staunch
To their fav'rite launch; And when the foe shall meet our fire, Sooner than strike we'll all expire
On board of the Arethusa.
'Twas with the spring fleet she went out, The English Channel to cruize about, When four French sail, in show so stout,
Bore down on the Arethusa. The fam'd Belle Poule straight ahead did lie : The Arethusa seem'd to fly ;
Not a sheet nor a tack
Or a brace did she slack, Tho' the Frenchmen laugh'd, and thought it stuff, But they knew not the handful of men how tough
On board of the Arethusa.
On deck five hundred men did dance, The stoutest they could find in France; We with two hundred did advance,
On board of the Arethusa. Our captain hail'd the Frenchman, ' Ho !' The Frenchman then cried out, ' Hallo !'