Main Content

Lime Juice Ship


courtesy of

If you want to join a merchant ship and sail the sea at large

You’ll not have any trouble if you have a good discharge

Signed by the Board of Trade with everything exact

And then you’ll get your months advance according to the Act.

(CHORUS sung after each verse)

So haul boys your weather mainbrace and ease away your lee

Hoist jib and topsails lads and let the ship go free

Shout boys shout I tell you it's a fact

There’s nothing done in Lime Juice ship contrary to the Act

 Now when you join the ship me boys you’ll here your articles read

They’ll tell you of your pork and beef your butter and your bread

Your coffee, tea and sugar boys your peas and beans exact

Your lime juice and your vinegar according to the Act

Now it’s watch and watch the first day out according to the Act

And then me boys we all lay aft to get our lime juice whack

Break out a Handy-Billy and slap her on a tack

For we’re going to set the mainsail-o according to the Act

Now it’s up on deck me bully boys with many a curse we go

Wishing that eight bells be struck, that we may go below

Eight bells is struck, the watch is aft, the log is hove exact

Relieve the wheel go down below according to the Act

The author of this website has put a lot of time and effort into gathering the greatest collection of sea shanties for the world to enjoy - There are songs that have been to sung to a job of work at sea for many, many years and collecting them has been a great endeavour. - Roger Chartier has made the effort out of his own interest and the requests that he has gotten to do this work from fellow musicians who wanted a good source of sea shanties to draw on and learn from. He has been told that for this effort he is a remarkable man.