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The Constitution and The Guerriere


courtesy of www.SailorSongs.comThis shanty is about the Constitution (Old Ironsides) and the was in 1812

It oft-times has been toldĀ  That the British seamen bold
Could flog the tars of France So neat and handy Oh
But they never met their match Till the Yankees did them catch
Oh the Yankee boys for fighting Are the dandy Oh

The Guerriere a frigate bold, On the foaming ocean rolled
Commanded by proud Dacres The grandee Oh
With as choice a British crew As ever a rammer drew
Could flog the Frenchmen Two to one so handy Oh

When the frigate hove in view, Says proud Dacres to his crew
Come clear the ship for action And be handy Oh
To the weather-gage boys get her And to make his men fight better
Gave them to drink gunpowder Mixed with brandy Oh

Then Dacres loudly cries Make this Yankee ship your prize
You can in thirty minutes Neat and handy Oh
Twenty-five's enough, I'm sure And if you'll do it in a score
I'll treat you to a double Share of brandy Oh

The British shot flew hot Which the Yankees answered not
Till they got within the distance They called handy Oh
Now says Hull unto his crew Let us see what we can do
If we take this boasting Briton We're the dandy Oh

The first broadside we poured Carried her mainmast by the board
Which made this lofty frigate Look abandoned Oh
Then Dacres shook his head And to his officers said
Lord I didn't think those Yankees Were so handy Oh

Our second told so well That their fore and mizzen fell
Which doused the royal ensign Neat and handy Oh
By George says he We're done And they fired a lee gun
While the Yankees struck up Yankee Doodle Dandy Oh

Then Dacres came on board To deliver up his sword
Though loth was he to part with it It was so handy Oh
Oh Keep your sword says Hull For it only makes you dull
Cheer up and let us have A little brandy Oh

Now fill your glasses full And we'll drink to Captain Hull
And so merrily we'll push Around the brandy Oh
Johnny Bull may boast his fill Let the world say what it will
The Yankee boys for fighting Are the dandy Oh

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.