How stands the glass around?
For shame ye take no care me boys
How stands the glass around?
Let mirth and wine abound.

The trumpet sounds…
The colours they are flying, boys
To fight, kill or wound.
May we still be found,
Content with our hard fare me boys
On the cold, cold ground.

Why soldiers why?
Should we be melancholy, boys?
Why soldiers why?
Whose lot is but to die…

Well, sighing’s fine,
But here drink on, me jolly boys
Tis you, he or I,
Cold, hot, wet or dry,
We’re always bound to follow, boys
And scorn to fly.

Oh, tis but in vain!
I mean not to afright ye boys.
Oh, tis but in vain!
For soldiers to complain.
Should next campaign
Send us to Him who made us, boys
We’re free from pain.
But should we remain,
A bottle and kind landlady
Cures all again…

Traditional 17th Century soldiers’ song

An authentic 17th Century soldiers’ song, resurrected by Mr Hande just in time for the 93 Convention. Somewhat mournful, it is chillingly real in its mention of the “cold, cold ground”, and the eternal optimism of the soldier, insomuch as, should they survive, a few basic comforts will make them feel well again.

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