Naval Songs & Ballads - online book

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

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264          SONGS AND BALLADS
The squadron under gallant Hood receiv'd a gallant breeze, To bring the French to action the present moment seiz'd ; The whole French fleet we did engage full eight glasses or more, And with our little squadron we well paid their score ; And like undaunted Britons each man stood to his gun, Altho' the French at times were nearly two to one. The rest of our fleet coming up, on them began to play, Which made them to haul their wind, like cowards run away.
Those cowards then to windward three days we did pursue, Until the twelfth of April the glorious figh t renew'd ; The wind did seem to favour us, our fleet hove in a line, And for to close our enemy it was our whole design. Bold Drake led the van, and fully bent was he To die or else to conquer the daring enemy. The action it commenced from the van unto the rear, And we brake their line of battle amidst the smoke of fire. Their Glory was dismasted, our shot so well we plied, While fury round the enemy did rage on every side.
So closely we pursued them they knew not where to run
To shelter their disabled ships from the fire of English guns.
From morning until evening the battle we maintain'd.
The sea on every side of us seem'd to be in a flame.
The lofty City of Paris and haughty Count de Grasse,
The one we took a pris'ner, the other laid avast.
What joy inspir'd each Briton's heart, when the action it did close,
To see the lilly of France strike to the English rose.
Now the lofty Vilk de Paris to Lewis is no more ;
Behold, she trims her lofty sails to deck Britannia's shore,
With three more of their lofty ships to bear her company,
And two, to make the fight compleat, lay buried in the sea.
So now bold Lewis think no more bold Britons to ensnare:
Our English tars will curb your pride-; your boasting we don't fear.
So, Britons, now join chorus and sound our admiral's praise,
Brave gallant Hood, and Drake, the terror of the seas,
All captains and lieutenants that fought with courage great,
All officers and seamen throughout the British fleet,
For we have and will still beat them; so, Britons bold, advance
To curb the boasting insults of proud and haughty France.