The Battle of the Boyne

Melody -

A kingly host upon a stream,
A monarch camped around
Its southern upland far and wide
Their white pavilions crowned;
Not long ago that sky unclouded showed,
Nor beneath the ray,
That gentle stream in silver flowed
To meet the new-born day.

2. Peals the loud gun-its thunders
Boom the echoing vales along
While curtained in its sulfurous boom
Moves on the gallant thrown.
And Foot and Horse in mingled mass,
Regardless all of life,
With furious ardor onward pass
To join the deadly strife.

3. Not strange that with such ardent flame
Each glowing heart beats high,
Their battle-word was William's name
And Death and Liberty!
Then Ouldbridge, then they peaceful bowers
With sounds unwonted rang,
And Tredagh, mid thy distant towers,
Was heard the mighty clang.

4. The silver stream is crimsoned wide
And clogged with many a corpse,
As floating down its gentle tide
Co-mingled man and horse;
Now fiercer grows the battle's rage,
The guarded stream is crossed,
And furious, hand-to-hand,
Engage each bold contending host.

5. He falls - the veteran hero falls,
Renowned along the Rhine
And he whose name, while Derry's walls
Endure shall brightly shine;
Oh! would to heaven that churchman bold,
His arms with triumph blest,
The soldier spirit had controlled
That fired his pious breast.

6. And he, the chief of yonder
Brave and persecuted band,
Who foremost rushed amid the wave
And gained the hostile strand,
He bleeds, brave Caillemonte - he bleeds
'Tis closed, his bright career,
Yet still that band to glorious deeds
His dying accents cheer.

7. And now that well-contested strand
Successive columns gain,
While backward James yielding band
Are borne across the plain;
In vain the sword green Erin draws,
And life away doth fling
Oh! worthy of a better cause
And of a bolder king.

8. In vain thy bearing bold is shown
Upon that blood-stained ground;
Thy towering hopes are overthrown,
Thy choicest fall around;
Nor, shamed abandon thou the fray,
Nor blush though conquered there;
A power against thee fights today
No mortal arm may dare.

9. Hurrah! Hurrah! For Liberty,
For her sword we draw,
And dared the battle while on high
Our Orange banners flew.
Woe worth the hour - worth the state,
When men shall cease to join
Wit grateful hearts to celebrate
The glories of the Boyne!


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