Archivi tag: Assassin’s Creed

Windy old weather (Fishes Lamentation)

Leggi in italiano

The songs of the sea run from shore to shore, in particular “Windy old weather”, which according to Stan Hugill is a song by Scottish fishermen entitled “The Fish of the Sea”, also popular on the North-East coasts of the USA and Canada.
TITLES: Fishes Lamentation, Fish in the Sea, Haisboro Light Song (Up Jumped the Herring), The Boston Come-All-Ye, Blow Ye Winds Westerly, Windy old weather

A forebitter sung occasionally as a sea shanty, redating back to 1700 and probably coming from some broadsides with the title “The Fishes’ Lamentation“. “This song appears on some broadsides as The Fishes’ Lamentation and seems to have survived as a sailor’s chantey or fisherman’s song. Whall (1910), Colcord (1938) and Hugill (1964) include it in their chantey books. We also recorded it from Bob Roberts on board his Thames barge, The Cambria. It also appears in the Newfoundland and Nova Scotia collections of Ken Peacock and Helen Creighton“. (from here)

A fishing ship is practicing trawling on a full moon night, and as if by magic, the fishes start talking and warning sailors about the arrival of a storm. The fishes described are all belonging to the Atlantic Ocean and are quite commonly found in the English Channel and the North Sea (as well as in the Mediterranean Sea).
The variants can be grouped into two versions

FIRST VERSION  Blow the Man down tune

In this version the fish warn (or threaten) the fishermen on the arrival of the storm, urging them to head to the ground. The text is reported in “Oxford Book of Sea Songs”, Roy Palmer

Bob Roberts, from Windy old weather, 1958

David Tinervia · Nils Brown · Sean Dagher · Clayton Kennedy · David Gossage from Assassin’s Creed – Black Flag
“Windy Old Weather”

Dan Zanes &  Festival Five Folk from Sea Music 2003 a fresh version between country and old time.

I
As we were a-fishing
off Happisburgh(1) light
Shooting and hauling
and trawling all night,
In the windy old weather,
stormy old weather
When the wind blows
we all pull together
II
When up jumped a herring,
the queen (king) of the sea(2)
Says “Now, old skipper,
you cannot catch me,”
III
We sighted a Thresher(3)
-a-slashin’ his tail,
“Time now Old Skipper
to hoist up your sail.”
IV (4)
And up jumps a Slipsole
as strong as a horse(5),
Says now, “Old Skipper
you’re miles off course.”
V
Then along comes plaice
-who’s got spots on his side,
Says “Not much longer
-these seas you can ride.”
VI
Then up rears a conger(6)
-as long as a mile,
“Winds coming east’ly”
-he says with a smile.
VII
I think what these fishes
are sayin’ is right,
We’ll haul up our gear(7)
now an’ steer for the light.

NOTES
1) Happisburgh lighthouse (“Hazeboro”) is located in the English county of ​​Norfolk, it was built in 1790 and painted in white and red stripes; It is managed by a foundation that deals with the maintenance of more than one hundred lighthouses throughout Great Britain. 112 are the steps to reach the tower that still works without the help of man. The headlights at the beginning were two but the lower one was dismantled in 1883 due to coastal erosion. The two lighthouses marked a safe passage through the Haagborough Sands
2) In the Nordic countries herrings (fresh or better in brine or smoked) are served in all sauces from breakfast to dinner. “It is a fish that loves cold seas and lives in numerous herds.The herring fishing in the North Seas has been widespread since the Middle Ages.It is clearly facilitated by the quantity of fish and the limited range of their movements. trawlers and start the fishing season on May 1, to close it after two months.In all the countries of North America and Northern Europe this fishing has an almost sacred character, because it has been for years the providence of fishermen and is a real natural wealth In the Netherlands and Sweden, for example, the first day of herring fishing is organized in honor of the queen and is proclaimed a national holiday ” (from here)
3) Thresher shark thresher, thrasher, fox shark, alopius vulpinus.with a characteristic tail with a very elongated upper part (almost as much as the length of the body) that the animal uses as a whip to stun and overwhelm its prey. The name comes from Aristotle who considered this fish very clever, because he was skilled in escaping from the fishermen
4) the mackerel stanza is missing:
then along comes a mackerel with strips on his back
“Time now, old skipper, to shift yout main tack”
5) perhaps refers to halibut or halibut, of considerable size, has an oval and flattened body, similar to that of a large sole, with the eyes on the right side
6) the “conger” is a fish with an elongated body similar to eel but more robust, can reach a length of two or three meters and exceeds ten kilos of weight. It is a fundamental ingredient in the Livorno cacciucco dish!
7) another translation of the sentence could be: we recover our networks

SCOTTISH VERSION, Blaw the Wind Southerly tune

In this version the fish take possession of the ship, it seems the description of the ghost ship of “Davy Jone”, the evil spirit of the waters made so vividly in the movie “Pirates of the Caribbean”. An old Scottish melody accompanies a series of variations of the same song.
davy-jones

 

Quadriga Consort from Ship Ahoy, 2011 ♪ 

Michiel Schrey, Sean Dagher, Nils Brown from, Assasin’s Creed – Black Flag  titled “Fish in the sea” (stanzas from I to III and VIII)

I
Come all you young sailor men,
listen to me,
I’ll sing you a song
of the fish in the sea;
(Chorus)
And it’s…Windy weather, boys,
stormy weather, boys,
When the wind blows,
we’re all together, boys;
Blow ye winds westerly,
blow ye winds, blow,
Jolly sou’wester, boys,
steady she goes.
II
Up jumps the eel
with his slippery tail,
Climbs up aloft
and reefs the topsail.
III
Then up jumps the shark
with his nine rows of teeth,
Saying, “You eat the dough boys,
and I’ll eat the beef!”
IV
Up jumps the lobster
with his heavy claws,
Bites the main boom
right off by the jaws!
V
Up jumps the halibut,
lies flat on the deck
He says, ‘Mister Captain,
don’t step on my neck!’
VI
Up jumps the herring,
the king of the sea,
Saying, ‘All other fishes,
now you follow me!’
VII
Up jumps the codfish
with his chuckle-head (1),
He runs out up forward
and throws out the lead!
VIII
Up jumps the whale
the largest of all,
“If you want any wind,
well, I’ll blow ye a squall(2)!”

NOTES
1) literally “stupid head” is a common saying among the fishermen that the cod is stupid, because it does not recognize the bait and lets himself hoist docilely on board.
2) the fishermen were / are very superstitious men, in all latitudes, it takes little or nothing to attract misfortune in the sea, it is still a widespread belief that the devil or the evil spirit has power over the sea and storms.

AMERICAN VARIANT: THE BOSTON COME-ALL-YE

Of the second version, the best-known in America bears the title “The Boston as-all-ye” as collected by Joanna Colcord in her “Songs of American Sailormen” which she writes”There can be little doubt that [this] song, although it was sung throughout the merchant service, began life with the fishing fleet. We have the testimony of Kipling in Captains Courageous that it was a favourite within recent years of the Banks fishermen. It is known as The Fishes and also by its more American title of The Boston Come-All-Ye. The chorus finds its origin in a Scottish fishing song Blaw the Wind Southerly. A curious fact is that Captain Whall, a Scotchman himself, prints this song with an entirely different tune, and one that has no connection with the air of the Tyneside keelmen to which our own Gloucester fishermen sing it. The version given here was sung by Captain Frank Seeley.”

Peggy Seeger from  Whaler Out of New Bedford, 1962

I
Come all ye young sailormen
listen to me,
I’ll sing you a song
of the fish of the sea.
Then blow ye winds westerly,
westerly blow;
we’re bound to the southward,
so steady she goes
.
II
Oh, first came the whale,
he’s the biggest of all,
he clumb up aloft,
and let every sail fall.
III
Next came the mackerel
with his striped back,
he hauled aft the sheets
and boarded each tack(1).
IV
The porpoise(2) came next
with his little snout,
he grabbed the wheel,
calling “Ready? About!(3”
V
Then came the smelt(4),
the smallest of all,
he jumped to the poop
and sung out, “Topsail, haul!”
VI
The herring came saying,
“I’m king of the seas!
If you want any wind,
I’ll blow you a breeze.”
VII
Next came the cod
with his chucklehead (5),
he went to the main-chains
to heave to the lead.
VIII
Last come the flounder(6)
as flat as the ground,
saying, “Damn your eyes, chucklehead, mind how you sound”!

NOTES
1) In sailing, tack is a corner of a sail on the lower leading edge. Separately, tack describes which side of a sailing vessel the wind is coming from while under way—port or starboard. Tacking is the maneuver of turning between starboard and port tack by bringing the bow (the forward part of the boat) through the wind. (from Wiki)
2) porpoise is often considered as a small dolphin, has a distinctive rounded snout and has no beak like dolphins
3) it  is the helmsman shouting
4 ) smelt it (osmero) is a small fish that lives in the Channel and in the North Sea; its name derives from the fact that its flesh gives off an unpleasant odor
5) literally “stupid head” is a common saying among the fishermen that the cod is stupid, because it does not recognize the bait and lets himself hoist docilely on board.

Blow the Wind Southerly

LINK
http://www.pubblicitaitalia.com/ilpesce/2013/1/12262.html
http://www.contemplator.com/sea/fishes.html
http://moodpoint.com/lyrics/unknown/song_of_the_fishes.html
http://www.shanty.org.uk/archive_songs/windy-old-weather.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/cyril.tawney/songs/windyoldweather.html
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=149445
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=49498
https://thesession.org/tunes/11479
http://bestpossiblejob.blogspot.it/2008/09/come-all-ye-young-and-not-so-young.html

Billy Riley sea shanty

Leggi in italiano

The halyards shanties were very common on nineteenth-century ships (postal, merchant or whaler).

National Maritime Museum; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
“Blackwall frigate” National Maritime Museum; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

OLD BILLY RILEY

The song “Billy Riley” is considered one of the first sea shanties, probably born of a cotton-hoosiers song sung by black slaves. The vessels on which it was sung were of the “Blackwall frigate” type, a three-masted ship built between the end of 1830 and the mid-1870s.
The sea shanty “Billy Riley” fits the rhythm of fast pulling and quick breathing.
Stan Hugill writes in his Shanty Bibble “They used Jackscrews to pack the cotton into the holds of vessels, to ram them up tight and so get more in the cargo hold. Lots of negroes were used in this labour, and their chants turned into shanties when the sailors used them for other jobs, often the tune remained and the words were changed to suit Sailor John. Negroes formed a large part of the crew of some vessels, and took their chants to sea with them, and a hell of a lot of ‘white mans shanties’ had negro origins.”

Stevedores (un)loading a ship in the late 19th century. There may have been some steam-driven winches but most of it was brute strength from man and beast using ropes and pulleys. from the Library of Congress collection

THE SARCASM

The shantyman plays on the words and teases Billy the commander of the ship, the degree of “master” is compared to that of a “dancing master”, but certainly captain is a rude and authoritarian kind and certainly not a dandy!
The term “master” is however little used in the sea songs in which the name “Captain” prevails or as in the sea shanty that it’s preferred “Old man”. What about unchaste thoughts that come to mind to the crew, addressed to Billy Riley’s wife (or daughter), while they were loading the ship?

Assassin’s Creed

Johnny Collins

AC Black Flag version
Old Billy Riley was a dancing master(1).
Old Billy Riley, oh, Old Billy Riley!
Old Billy Riley’s master of a drogher(2).
Master of a drogher bound for Antigua.
Old Billy Riley has a nice young daughter(3).
Oh Missy Riley, little Missy Riley.
Had a pretty daughter,
but we can’t get at her.
Screw her up(4) and away we go, boys.
One more pull and then belay, boys
Johnny Collins version
Oh Billy Riley, Mister Billy Riley
Oh Billy Riley oh
Billy Riley, Mister Billy Riley
Oh Billy Riley oh
Old Billy Riley was a dancing master(1).
Oh Billy Riley shipped aboard a droger(2)
Oh Billy Riley wed the skipper’s daughter(3)
Oh Mrs Riley didn’t like sailors
Oh Mrs Riley had a lovely daughter
Oh Missy Riley, pretty Missy Riley
Oh Missy Riley, screw her up to Chile(4)

NOTES
Droger1) it’s referred to the captain in an ironic sense
2) drogher was a slow cargo ship for transport along the West Indies coast, more properly a triangular fishing boat. More generally, the West Indies for Europeans of the fifteenth century were one with the American continent, so even in 1507 Amerigo Vespucci sensed that the Europeans had “discovered” a new continent the term remained in use for many centuries. Thus the drogher is located in the Caribbean and sails to Antigua, the island of the Lesser Antilles, where sugar and cotton are produced. I think the term is used in a derogatory sense always against the commander because his is not really a ship that plows the oceans !!
3) droger- daughter word games for assonance
4) “screw her up to Chile” is probably a modegreen for “screw her up so cheerily”. Cheerily is a typical seafaring expression for “with a will” or “quickly.” The word screw though two-way has the primary meaning of “tighten up” (compress). “Cotton was” “screwed”. Cotton was “screwed” into the hold of a ship using a kind of enormous horizontal jack. Stan Hugill says: “They are used to pack the cotton into the vessels of vessels.”

JOHN SHORT VERSION

Jeff Warner from Short Sharp Shanties : Sea songs of a Watchet sailor vol 3

Both Sharp and Terry comment that they have not come across any version other than Short’s – although Fox-Smith and Colcord (who published later) both give versions.  Hugill notes the “remarkable resemblance between Billy Riley and Tiddy High O!” and feels that “it probably originates as a cotton-hoosiers song.” It may be that it was an early shanty that became less and less used, for Fox-Smith states that: “I have come across very few of the younger generation of sailormen who have heard it. All versions seem fairly consistent and what words there are in Short’s text fit the usual pattern and so have been augmented from the other sources.  Sharp’s notes, after the text, say: “and so on, sometimes varying ‘walk him up so cheer’ly’ with ‘screw him up etc”. (from here)

Oh Billy Riley, little Billy Riley
(Oh Billy Riley oh)
Oh  Billy Riley walk her up so cheerily
Oh Billy Riley, little Billy Riley
Oh  Billy Riley screw her up so cheerily
Oh Mister Riley, oh Missy Riley.
Oh Missy Riley screw her up so cheerily
Oh Billy Riley was a boardinghouse master
Oh Billy Riley had a lovely daughter
Oh Missy Riley how I love your daughter
Oh Missy Riley I can’t get at her
Oh Missy Riley, little Missy Riley
Oh Missy Riley, screw her up so cheerily
Oh Billy Riley hauling and hung together
Oh  Billy Riley walk her up so cheerily

LINK
http://mainlynorfolk.info/lloyd/songs/oldbillyriley.html
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=46593 http://www.exmouthshantymen.com/songbook.php?id=92

Get Up, Jack! John, Sit Down

Leggi in Italiano

Entitled “Jolly Roving Tar” but more frequently “Get Up, Jack! John, Sit Down” here is a forebitter song that ironizes on the idle occupations of a sailor when he is ashore.
For my money’s gone,” says the sailor who is well liked and fondled by the ladies when his pockets are full, but immediately put aside for another sailor when the money ends!

A similar song (we do not know if original or a traditional version rewriting) was written in New York in 1885 by Ed Harrigan & David Braham for the music hall entitled ‘Old Lavender‘ (text and score here); a version published by John and Alan Lomax in “American Ballads & Folk Songs” was attributed to John Thomas, a Welsh sailor who was on “the Philadelphian” in 1896. (text here), but the main source of the best known variant comes from “Grammy” Fish .

“GRAMMY” FISH

Mrs. Lena Bourne Fish (1873-1945) spent the first 24 years of her life in Black Brook, NY, not far from the Canadian border. Lena’s main source of songs was her own family, the Bourne; his ancestors were the first settlers of Cape Cod and a lot of songs (with many English and Irish traditional tunes) had passed to the family generations since emigration . As a lumber trader, her father  collected many songs from the people he met in the New England woods in his travels.
Once married, Lena moved to Jaffrey, New Hampshire. Two collectors of traditional songs (Helen Harkness Flanders and Marguerite Olney) interviewed her in 1940 and recorded about 175 songs; the following year Anne and Frank Warner collected a hundred songs in four recording sessions half of which completly new ones.
“Grammy” Fish had taken her role as a witness of the past to heart so as to transcribe the “old songs” in many notebooks to leave them to the new generations.

Assassin’s Creed Rogue, Sea Shanty Edition

Bootstrappers live

I
Ships may come and ships may go
as long as the seas do roll
But a sailor lad just like his dad
he loves the flowing bowl
a woman ashore he does adore
a girl who’s plump and round
when your money’s all gone,
it’s the same old song
“Get up, Jack! John, sit down!”
CHORUS
Come along, come along,
me jolly brave boys,
There’s plenty more grog(1) in the jar
We’ll plough the briny ocean line
like a jolly roving tar
II
When Jack’s ashore, he’ll make his way
To some old boarding house(2)
He’s welcomed in with rum and gin,
likewise with pork and scouse
He’ll spend and spend and never offend
Till he lies drunk on the ground
When his money’s all gone…
III
Then Jack will slip(3) on board
some ship bound for India or Japan
and in Asia there, the ladies fair
all love a sailor man
He’ll go ashore and he’ll not scorn
to buy some girl her gown
when his money’s all gone…
IV
When Jack is worn and weatherbeat
too old to cruise about
they’ll let him stop in some rum shop
Till eight bells(4) calls him out
Then he’ll raise hands high
and loud he’ll cry “Thank Christ, I’m homeward bound!”
when his money’s all gone…

NOTES
1) grog= drink
2) Boarding houses are pensions for sailors, present in every large sea port. “They are held by boarding masters, of dubious reputation, which the sailors define as” recruiters “, who provide” indifferently lodging and boarding “. They often welcome sailors “on credit”. On the advance received by boarders at the time of enrollment, they recover for food and accommodation, and with the rest they provide them with poor quality clothing and equipment “. (Italo Ottonello)
3)  or “He then will sail aboard some ship
4)”When it’s the end” his watch on board is finished as well as his life. On the old vessels the ringing sound of a bell regulated the time, every 4-hour guard duty was signaled by 8 bell strokes. (the eight bells were ringed at 4, at 8, at 12, at 16, at 20 and at midnight). An hourglass was used to calculate the time.

Great Big Sea from Play 1997. Traditional American Folk Songs from the Anne & Frank Warner Collection, #71.

I
Ships may come and ships may go
As long as the sea does roll.
Each sailor lad just like his dad,
He loves the flowing bowl.
A trip on shore he does adore
With a girl who’s nice and round.
When the money’s gone
It’s the same old song,
“Get up Jack! John, sit down!
[Chorus]
Come along, come along,
You jolly brave boys,
There’s lots of grog(1) in the jar.
We’ll plough the briny ocean
With the jolly roving tar.
II
When Jack comes in, it’s then he’ll steer
To some old boarding house(2).
They’ll welcome him with rum and gin,
And feed him on pork scouse.
He’ll lend, spend and he’ll not offend (3) Till he’s lyin’ drunk on the ground
When the money’s gone
It’s the same old song,
“Get up Jack! John, sit down!
III
Jack, he then, oh then he’ll sail
Bound down for Newfoundland.
All the ladies fair in Placentia(4) there
They love that sailor man
He’ll go to shore out on a tear
And he’ll buy some girl a gown.
When the money’s gone
It’s the same old song,
“Get up Jack! John, sit down!
IV
When Jack gets old and weather beat,
Too old to roam about,
They’ll let him stop in some rum shop
Till eight bells(5) calls him out.
Then he’ll raise his eyes up to the skies,
Sayin’ “Boys, we’re homeward bound.”
When the money’s gone
It’s the same old song,
“Get up Jack! John, sit down!

NOTES
3) meaning that he will not offend the innkeeper with a refusal
4) Placentia is a small Canadian city formed by the union of the villages of Jerseyside, Townside, Freshwater, Dunville and Argentia .
5)”When it’s the end” his watch on board is finished as well as his life. On the old vessels the ringing sound of a bell regulated the time, every 4-hour guard duty was signaled by 8 bell strokes.

ENGLISH VERSION

In the nineteenth century there was a completely different version in which poor Susan was distraught because the fine William was still far from the sea, she decided to follow him as a sailor. The version is still popular in Newfoundland. As much as I searched the web at the moment I did not find a video to listen to.
It was in the town of Liverpool, all in the month of May,
I overheard a damsel, alone as she did stray,
She did appear like Venus or some sweet, lovely star,
As she walked toward the beach, lamenting for her jolly, roving Tar.

Jolly Roving Tar by “Irish Rovers”

The text was written by George Millar the founder of the “Irish Rovers” and although a different song borrows some phrases from “Get Up, Jack! John, Sit Down” other equally famous sea songs on sailors.
The Irish Rover from Another Round 2005: various dances taken from fantasy films and animations

I
Well here we are, we’re back again
Safe upon the shore
In Belfast town we’d like to stay
And go to sea no more
We’ll go into a public house
And drink till we’re content
For the lassies they will love us
Till our money is all spent
CORO
So pass the flowin’ bowl
Boys there’s whiskey in the jar
And we’ll drink to all the lassies
And the jolly roving tar
II
Oh Johnny did you miss me
When the nights were long and cold
Or did you find another love
In your arms to hold
Says he I thought of only you
While on the sea afar
So come up the stairs and cuddle
With your jolly roving tar
III
Well in each other’s arms they rolled
Till the break of day
When the sailor rose
and said farewell
I must be on me way
Ah don’t you leave me Johnny lad
I thought you’d marry my
Says he I can’t be married
For I’m married to the sea
IV
Well come all you bonnie lasses
And a warning take by me
And never trust an Irishman
An inch above your knee
He’ll tease you and he’ll squeeze you
And when he’s had his fun
He’ll leave you in the morning
With a daughter or a son

LINK
http://www.shanty.org.uk/archive_songs/jolly-roving-tar.html
http://www.jsward.com/shanty/JollyRovinTar/lomax.html
http://www.wtv-zone.com/phyrst/audio/nfld/07/jolly.htm
http://www.goldenhindmusic.com/lyrics/GETUPJAC.html
http://www.wtv-zone.com/phyrst/audio/nfld/08/getup.htm
http://levysheetmusic.mse.jhu.edu/catalog/levy:072.028
http://thejovialcrew.com/?page_id=338
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=96587
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=96582
http://adirondackmusic.org/subpages/69/9/6/lena-bourne-fish

Admiral Benbow ballads

Leggi in italiano

The heroic exploits of Admiral John Benbow (1653-1702) are sung in some contemporary ballads dating back to the days of the Spanish Civil War. He was called “the Brother Tar” because he started his military carrier from below, as a simple sailor; thanks to his ingenuity, the courage and help of his mentor Admiral Arthur Herbert, Count of Torrington.
His activity, except for a parenthesis in which he gave himself to the merchant navy (1686-1689), was dedicated to the Royal Navy. He left the army the degree of master, after being brought before the court martial because of a dispute against an officer, it should be noted that the code of conduct between the officers was very rigid (and even today with military degrees there is little to joke) and after having brought his public apology to Captain Booth of the Adventure and repaid the fine with three months of work without pay, Benbow decided to resign. The following year he became the owner of the frigate Benbow roamed the Mediterranean and the English Channel hunting for pirates, earning the reputation of a skilled and ruthless captain. Returning to the navy in 1689 with the rank of third lieutenant on the Elizabeth, after four months he obtained the rank of commander of the York and he distinguished himself in the naval actions along the French coasts; he was then sent to the West Indies to eradicate piracy and in 1701 he was appointed vice-admiral. It is said that King William had offered the command to several gentlemen who refused (because of the climate) and so he exclaimed “I understand, we will spare the gentlemen and we will send to the Antilles the honest Benbow”

Tarpaulin&Gentleman

In the early English Navy there was a system of voluntary training: a captain used to take care of young boy and instruct them as long as they were unable to pass the aptitude test. However, there remained a dividing line between the tarpaulin officer, without a high social status and the gentleman officer, the privileged aspirant. In fact, the gentlemen obtained their license of ensign more for relationships of kinships that for merits, so that in 1677 it was introduced an entrance examination that had to precede a compulsory three-year training. But in 1730 they preferred to return to the old system of voluntary training.

THE LAST BATTLE

His last action, off the coast of Cape Santa Marta , was against Admiral Jean Du Casse and his fleet: from 19 to 25 August 1702; Benbow had seven ships at his command but his captains proved unwilling to obey orders: only on the afternoon of the first day a fight was waged and only the flagship and the Ruby under captain George Walton chased French ships with the intent to give battle, while the other english ships were kept out. The Ruby was put out of action on the 22nd and at this point the Falmouth in command of Samuel Vincent decided to line up with Benbow, but it was seriously damaged and forced to retreat, the same Benbow besieged by the French ships and subjected to a cannon shot had a mangled leg and he was brought below deck, where a war council was held with his officers who had all gathered together on board the flagship.
To see the war action in detail see

from Master and Commander

Benbow was determined to pursuit of battle, but his captains, believing they had no chance of victory, recommended him merely of pursuing the French ships: Benbow, convinced that a mutiny was being carried out against him, gave the order to return in Jamaica and sent his commanders beheind the court martial on charges of insubordination; Captain Richard Kirby and Captain Cooper Wade were found guilty and shot. Despite the amputation of his leg Benbow died two months after the battle and was buried in Kingston.

ADMIRAL BENBOW BY CECIL SHARP

The melody is equally popular and it is shared with the Captain Kidd ballad giving life to a melodic family used for various songs.
Among the songs of the sea in the series Sea Shanty Edition for the fourth episode of the video game Assassin’s Creed that include some ballads about the brave captains, to celebrate the victories or heroic deeds that led them to death.
The version in Assassin’s Creed from the text transcribed by Cecil Sharp on the song of Captain Lewis of Minehead (1906) the strophes, however, are halved (I, II, VI)

I
Come all you seamen bold
and draw near, and draw near
Come all you seamen bold and draw near
It’s of an Admiral’s fame Brave Benbow (1) was his name
How he sailed up on the main (2)
you shall hear, you shall hear
II
Brave Benbow he set sail
For to fight, for to fight
Brave Benbow he set sail
For to fight
Brave Benbow he set sail in a keen and pleasant gale
But his captains they turn’d tail in a fright (3), in a fright
III
Says Kirby unto Wade (4), “We will run, we will run.”
Says Kirby unto Wade, “We will run. For I value no disgrace
nor the losing of my place
But the enemy I won’t face
Nor his guns, nor his guns.”
IV
The Ruby (5) and Benbow fought the French, fought the French,
The Ruby and Benbow Fought the French.
They fought them up and down
‘Til the blood came trickling down
‘Til the blood came trickling down Where they lay, where they lay.
V
Brave Benbow lost his legs
By chain shot, by chain shot,
Brave Benbow lost his legs
By chain shot.
Brave Benbow lost his legs
And all on his stumps he begs
“Fight on, my English lads
‘Tis our lot, ‘tis our lot.”
VI
The surgeon dress’d his wounds Benbow cried, Benbow cried
The surgeon dress’d his wounds Benbow cried
“Let a cradle now in haste on the quarterdeck (6) be placed
That the enemy I may face
‘Til I die, ‘Til I die
Mary Evans Picture Library : J R Skelton in Lang, “Outposts of Empire” 1910

NOTES
1) Benbow made his career in the ranks of the Royal Navy in the late 1600s until he became Vice-Admiral
2) the West Indian Sea
3) in a fright: panicked
4) the captains who left the battle were tried and sentenced to death by desertion
5) the Ruby supported the attack of the flagship Breda against the French vessels
6) Benbow despite the injured leg (which will be amputated) wants to continue to give orders on the bridge and so requires a cradle to be able to remain seated and stretch the leg crushed, provisionally bandaged by the doctor

COPPER FAMILY VERSION

Paul Clayton, from “Whaling and sailing songs from the days of Moby Dick” 1954

I
It was often at Marais
Calling Benbow by his name
He fought on the raging main
You must know
Oh, the ship rocks up and down
And the shots are flying round
The enemy tumbling down
There they lay, there they lay
II
‘Twas Reuben (1) and Benbow
Fought the French, fought the French
‘Twas Reuben and Benbow
Fought the French,
Down on his old stump he fell
And so loudly he did call
Fight ye on, me English lads
‘Tis my lot, ’tis my lot
III
When the doctor dressed his wound
Benbow cried, Benbow cried
When the doctor dressed his wound
Benbow cried,
Let a bed be fetched in haste
On the quarterdeck be placed
That the enemy I might face
‘Til I die, ’til I die
IV
On Tuesday morning last
Benbow died, Benbow died
On Tuesday morning last
Benbow died
What a shocking sight to see
When Benbow was carried away
He was carried to Kingston church (2)
There he lay, there he lay

NOTES
1) the Ruby supported the attack of the flagship Breda against the French vessels
2) he was buried in the Parish Church of Kingston (Jamaica)

ADMIRAL BENBOW BY WILLIAM CHAPPELL

Entitled “Benbow, the Brother Tar’s song” the ballad was written by William Chappel in his “Old English Popular Music”.
“The tune is a variant of Love Will Find Out the Way, first published in 1651. Originally, it circulated in the world of fashion, but after 1680 it seems to have passed almost exclusively into the keeping of agricultural workers. Chappell collected it from hop-pickers in the mid nineteenth century, and Lucy Broadwood found it in Sussex in 1898.” (from here)
The action is very inaccurate (see above)
June Tabor & Martin Simpson from A cut above, 1982

I
We sailed from Virginia
and thence to Fayall
Where we watered our shipping
and then we weighed all.
Full in view on the seas, boys,
seven sails we did espy;
We mannéd our capstans
and weighed speedily.
II
Now the first we come up with was a brigantine sloop (1)
And we asked if the others was as big as they looked;
Ah, but turning to windward,
as near as we could lie
We saw there were ten (2) men of war cruising by.
III
We drew up our squadron in very nice line
And boldly we fought them for full four hours time;
But the day being spent, boys, and the night a-coming on
We left them alone till the early next morn.
IV
Now the very next morning the engagement proved hot
And brave Admiral Benbow received a chain shot;
And as he was wounded to his merry men he did say,
“Take me up in your arms, boys, and carry me away!”
V
Now the guns they did rattle and the bullets did fly,
But brave Admiral Benbow for help would not cry;
“Take me down to the cockpit, there is ease for my smarts,
If my merry men see me, it would sure break their hearts.”
VI
Now, the very next morning by break of the day
They hoisted their topsails and so bore away;
We bore to Port Royal where the people flocked much
To see Admiral Benbow carried to Kingston Church (3).
VII
Come all you brave fellows, wherever you’ve been,
Let us drink to the health of our King and our Queen,
And another good health to the girls that we know,
And a third in remembrance (4) of great Admiral Benbow.

NOTES
1) the French fleet under the command of Admiral Du Casse was escorting a convoy of troops, the flagship Breda captured the Anne, originally an English ship captured by the French
2) they were actually only 5
3) Benbow was buried in the Parish Church of Kingston (Jamaica)
4) in his honor Robert Louis Stevenson in his book “Treasure Island” inserts an “Admiral Benbow Inn” at the beginning of the story

LINK
https://www.historytoday.com/sam-willis/dark-side-admiral-benbow
http://bravebenbow.com/
http://bravebenbow.com/?page_id=136
http://mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=137
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2169
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=109642
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=56280
http://reelyredd.com/admiral-benbow-song.htm

https://mainlynorfolk.info/copperfamily/songs/admiralbenbow.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/june.tabor/songs/admiralbenbow.html

HI HO COME ROLL ME OVER

Una breve “haul shanty” riportata da Stan Hugill ma pubblicata per la prima volta da  John Masefield. Breve ma fitta di manovre marinaresche di ardua comprensione per un terricolo!!
Rimando al Blog di Ranzo per la discussione in merito alle origini del canto, che così commenta: Coming to Hugill’s notes, which are very brief, he says he got it from Harding. The Barbadian claimed at the time (1932) that it was still being used in the West Indies for “rolling logs.” If that was the case, it seems unlikely that Masefield’s “Dane” made it up. (continua)

ASCOLTA Assassin’s Creed per Black Flag

Why don’t you blow (1)
High-O! Come roll (2) me over
One man to strike the bell
Two men to man the wheel (3)
Three men, to gallant braces (4)
Four men to furl t’garns’ls( 5)
Five men to bunt-a-bo (6)
Traduzione* di Cattia Salto
Perchè non spingete?
Forza! Venite a darmi una mano
uno per colpire la campana
due ad armare il timone
tre ai bracci di velaccio
quattro a serrare i velacci
cinque alla pancia

NOTE
* revisionata e corretta da Italo Ottonello
1) il verbo to blow significa sia colpire che soffiare; spesso nei canti marinareschi viene utilizzato come un’incitazione a fare forza
2) il termine roll viene genericamente utilizzato dai marinai per dire molte cose, spesso con il significato di “salpare”, qui il riferimento potrebbe essere al lavoro di far rotolare i tronchi in acqua
3) letteralmente “due uomini per maneggiare il timone” ma Italo Ottonello mi suggerisce un termine più tecnico “armare il timone”
4) il “braccio” è il cavo che regola il pennone, i bracci di velaccio si riferiscono ai cavi che orientano la vela superiore dell’albero maestro
5) to furl t’garns’ls  forma abbreviata per “To furl the garnsails”, topgallant sail (velaccio) è abbreviato in “t’garns’l” si dice anche gallant or garrant sail: Vela della maestra del 3° ordine (Main top-gallant sail)
6)  buntlines sono gli imbrogli delle vele che sollevano la parte centrale della vela per consentire di terzarolarla (serrarla)

(manovra sulla nave scuola Amerigo Vespucci – foto: dal sito web Marina Militare Italiana)

A spiegare la manovra a tavolino entrano in gioco troppi termini tecnici così seguiamo la manovra dal vivo

Italo Ottonello segnala anche questo video dell’equipaggio della Elissa mentre sbrogliano una vela e poi la serrano (due manovre perfettamente riprese e commentate)

FONTI
http://www.ammiraglia88.it/SEZIONE_NORMALE/PAGINE_SITO/vele.html
http://shantiesfromthesevenseas.blogspot.it/2012/03/111-high-o-come-roll-me-over.html
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=144116
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=95655

DOWN AMONG THE DEAD MEN

Una popolare drinking song settecentesca attribuita erroneamente a John Dyer (1700-1758); l’equivoco nacque dalla dicitura di commento su un broadside del 1715  “A Song sung by Mr. Dyer at Mr. Bullock’s Booth at Southwark Fair,” trattandosi invece del  popolare cantore londinese Robert Dyer; la canzone si diffuse in epoca vittoriana fino a trovare la sua collocazione tra i canti goliardici degli studenti inglesi moderni. Dato il tema è finita anche nelle sound track del video gioco Assassin’s Creed – Black Flag una perfetta canzone da pirata.

ASCOLTA Assassin’s Creed Syndicate (strofe I, III, IV) la versione di Sean Dagher in Black Flag sea shanty su Spotify qui

ASCOLTA The Virginia Company in “Smash the Windows”


I
Here’s a health to the King (1), and a lasting peace
May faction be damn’d, and discord cease (2):
Come, let us drink it while we have breath,
For there’s no drinking after death.
And he who would this toast deny,
CHORUS
Down among the dead men (3),
down among the dead men,
Down, down, down, down;
Down among the dead men let him lie (4)!
II
Let charming beauty’s health go round,
With whom celestial joys are found.
And may confusion yet pursue
That selfish woman-hating crew.
And he who’d woman’s health deny,
III
In smiling Bacchus’ joys I’ll roll,
Deny no pleasures to my soul.
Let Bacchus’ health round briskly move,
For Bacchus is the friend of love.
And he that would this health deny,
IV
May love and wine their rights maintain,
And their united pleasures reign.
While Bacchus’ treasure crowns the board,
We’ll sing the joy that both afford.
And they that won’t with us comply,
tradotto da Cattia Salto
I
Alla salute del Re e alla pace duratura
possa la faziosità essere dannata e la discordia cessare:
vieni beviamo mentre siamo vivi
perchè non c’è da bere dopo la morte
e colui che rifiuta di brindare
Coro
giù tra le bottiglie vuote
giù tra le bottiglie vuote
giù, giù, giù, giù,
giù tra le bottiglie vuote possa finire!
II
Che la bellezza incantevole prosperi
con la quale si toccano gioie paradisiache
e possa il caos ancora perseguitare
quella ciurma egoista che odia la donna
e colui che la salute della donna nega..
III
Tra le gioie di Bacco ridente sguazzo
e non nego i piaceri al mio spirito
che il brindisi a Bacco circoli rapidamente
perchè Bacco è l’amico di Amore
e chi volesse questo brindisi negare ..
IV
Che Amore e Vino mantengano i loro diritti
e i loro piaceri uniti regnino.
Mentre il tesoro di Bacco corona la tavola
canteremo la gioia che entrambi dispensano e coloro che non vogliono a noi conformarsi ..

NOTE
1) in epoca vittoriana si brinda alla salute della Regina, ma originariamente la dedica era rivolta alla regina Anna di Gran Bretagna così iniziava il verso “Here’s a health to the mem’ry of Queen Anne”
2) anche scritto “To faction an end, to wealth increase”
3) Dead mens ono le bottiglie vuote
4) l’augurio è di finire lungo disteso a terra in stato incosciente per l’ubriachezza
FONTI
http://musicofyesterday.com/sheet-music-d/among-dead-men-dyer/
https://www.8notes.com/scores/4164.asp
http://thebards.net/music/lyrics/Down_Among_The_Dead_Men.shtml

CAPTAIN WARD AND THE RAINBOW

Tra le canzoni del mare nella serie Sea Shanty Edition per il quarto episodio del video-gioco Assassin’s Creed si annoverano alcune ballate sui capitani coraggiosi, per celebrarne le vittorie o le gesta eroiche che li hanno portati alla morte. Non solo ufficiali della Royal Navy ma anche corsari o pirati.
Il Capitano John Ward (1553-1622), soprannominato Jack Birdy nacque a Feversham nel Kent da un semplice pescatore, ma preferì la vita del corsaro sotto il regno di Elisabetta I; caduto in disgrazia sotto Giacomo I (che non volle proseguire la guerra di corsa contro la Spagna) si dedicò alla pirateria nel Canale della Manica, passando ben presto ai ricchi bottini dei traffici mercantili nel Mediterraneo; John o Jack Ward si fece musulmano e divenne un famigerato pirata barbaresco con il nome di Yusuf Reis, dedito al lucroso traffico degli schiavi (l’oro bianco): nel secolo successivo l’asse della storia si sposta definitivamente nel Mar delle Antille e il connubio Pirata&Caraibi per noi oggi scatta in automatico, sminuendo ai l’importanza del Mar Mediterraneo e delle sue rotte commerciali (continua)
Jack nel suo palazzo di marmo e alabastro a Tunisi allevava piccoli uccellini perciò venne soprannominato Jack “Asfour” (Jack il passero) cioè Jack Birdy (che assonanza con l’hollywoodiano Jack Sparrow!)
Metà uomo, metà leggenda, John Ward era l’arcipirata, il re corsaro del folklore popolare. Autori di ballate londinesi raccontavano per le strade che il “più famoso pirata del mondo” terrorizzava i mercanti di Francia e di Spagna, Portogallo e Venezia, e metteva in rotta i potenti Cavalieri di San Giovanni con la sua intrepidezza e astuzia. Genitori spaventavano i loro figli con i racconti del demone “che non temeva né Dio né il diavolo e le sue azioni sono perfide, maligni i suoi pensieri”, e si spaventavano a vicenda raccontando che coloro che finivano nelle sue grinfie venivano legati dorso a dorso e gettati in mare, oppure fatti a pezzi, o spietatamente uccisi a colpi di arma da fuoco. Dai pulpiti, ecclesiastici proclamavano che Ward e i suoi rinnegati avrebbero finito i loro giorni in ebbrezza, lascivia e sodomia nei sibaritici ambienti del loro palazzo tunisino…”. (Adrian Tinniswood in Pirati. Avventure, Scontri E Razzie, 2011 tratto da qui)

LA BALLATA: WARD THE PIRATE

Sul Pirata vennero scritte diverse ballate a testimoniare la sua popolarità e anche il professor Child riporta una versione testuale nella sua imponente raccolta “The English and Scottish Popular Ballads”, classificandola al numero 287.  Kenneth S. Goldstein commenta: “This ballad concerns the famous English pirate, John Ward, who, together with a Dutch accomplice, Dansekar, was the scourge of the seas from 1604 to 1609. Though Ward was the subject of numerous ballad and prose pieces, the traditional ballad appears to derive from a black letter broadside of the 17th century.The ballad has had a longer life in the New World than in Britain. It has not been reported from tradition in England since Child, and the two versions recorded by Greig in Aberdeen appear to be the last reported in Scotland. It has, however, not infrequently been reported in America. Some of the American texts tell of Ward’s capture and hanging, which, though consistent with history, do not come from the broadside tradition mentioned above. It is possible that this element may have been borrowed from some other sea song in much the same way in which some versions of Sir Andrew Barton (Child 167) borrow Ward’s taunting lines from the last stanza of this ballad.” (tratto da qui)

ASCOLTA Top Floor Taivers

ASCOLTA Linda Morrison

ASCOLTA Tannahill Weavers


I
Come all ye jolly mariners
That love to tak’ a dram (1)
I’ll tell ye o’ a robber
That o’er the seas did come.
II
He wrote a letter to his king
The eleventh o’ July,
To see if he would accept o’ him
For his jovial company. (2)
III
“Ho no, ho no,” says the king,
“Such things they cannot be,
They tell me ye are a robber,
A robber on the sea.”
IV
He has built a bonnie ship,
An’ sent her to the sea,
With four and twenty mariners
To guard his bonnie ship wi’.
V
They sailed up an’ they sailed down,
Sea stately, blythe, an’ free, (3)
Till they spied the king’s high Reindeer (4)
A leviathan on the sea.
VI
They fought from one in the morning
Till it was six at night,
Until the king’s high Reindeer
Was forced to take her flight.
VII
“Gang him, gang him, ye tinkers (5).
Tell ye your king fear me
Though he’s the king on dry land,
And I will be king upon the sea.”
traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
I
Venite tutti voi allegri marinai
che amate ascoltare le storie (1)
Vi narrerò di un filibustiere
che dal mare è venuto
II
Scrisse una lettera al suo Re
l’11 di luglio
per vedere se lo avrebbe ricevuto
per una piacevole visita (2).
III
“O no, no, no – dice il Re-
non s’ha da fare
mi risulta che tu sia un filibustiere,
un filibustiere del mare”
IV
Costruì una bella nave
e la mandò in mare
con 24 marinai
a governare la sua bella nave
V
Navigarono in lungo e in largo sul mare maestosamente, felici e liberi (3)
fino a quando videro la Reindeer (4)
l’ammiraglia del Re,
un leviatano del mare
VI
Dettero battaglia dall’una di mattina
fino alle sei di sera
finchè la Reindeer
fu costretta ad andarsene
VII
“Tornate da lui, voi vagabondi (5)
dite al vostro Re che non lo temo
anche se è il re della terra ferma
io sono il re dei Mari”

NOTE
1) in origine il verso era: strike up, you lusty gallants, with musick and sound of drum,
2) Giacomo I gli rifiutò il perdono regale condannandolo all’esilio perpetuo
3) come dice Jack Sparrow “una nave non è solo una chiglia e uno scafo con ponte e vele. Una nave è libertà
4) nella versione riportata dal Professor Child la nave è inviata dal Re e si chiama The Rainbow
5) termine dispregiativo derivato dai traveller

FONTI
http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/eng/child/ch287.htm
http://www.homolaicus.com/storia/trasversale/pirati-corsari.htm
http://guide.supereva.it/rinascimento/interventi/2010/07/dal-kent-a-tunisi
https://corsaridelmediterraneo.it/ward-john/
http://www.tannahillweavers.com/lyrics/1146ly13.htm
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=56447
http://www.contemplator.com/sea/ward.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/peter.bellamy/songs/wardthepirate.html

Le ballate dell’ammiraglio Benbow

Read the post in English

Le gesta eroiche dell’Ammiraglio John Benbow (1653-1702) sono cantate in alcune ballate coeve risalenti ai tempi della Guerra di secessione spagnola. Era chiamato “the Brother Tar” perchè diede la scalata alla catena del comando militare dal basso, come semplice marinaio; grazie al suo ingegno, al coraggio e all’aiuto del suo mentore l’ammiraglio Arthur  Herbert, Conte di Torrington.
La sua attività, tranne una parentesi in cui si diede al commercio privato (1686-1689), fu dedicata alla marina militare. Lasciò la marina con il gradi di luogonentente (master, cioè l’ufficiale di rotta) dopo essere stato portato davanti alla corte marziale a causa di una battutaccia contro un ufficiale, c’è da rilevare che il codice di comportamento tra gli ufficiali era molto rigido (e ancora oggi con i gradi militari c’è ben poco da scherzare) e dopo aver porto le sue pubbliche scuse al capitano Booth dell’Adventure e ripagato la multa con tre mesi di lavoro senza paga, Benbow pensò bene di dimettersi. L’anno successivo diventato proprietario della fregata Benbow scorazzò per il mediterraneo e nel canale della Manica a caccia di pirati guadagnandosi la fama di capitano abile e spietato.  Rientrato nel giungo del 1689 nella marina militare con il grado di terzo luogotenente sull’ Elizabeth,  dopo nemmeno quattro mesi ottenne il grado di comandante della York e si distinse nelle azioni navali contro le coste francesi; venne mandato poi nelle Indie Occidentali a debellare la pirateria  e nel 1701 fu nominato vice-ammiraglio. Si dice che re Guglielmo avesse offerto il comando a parecchi gentlemen che però rifiutarono (a causa del clima) e così esclamò “Ho capito, risparmieremo i damerini e manderemo alle Antille l’onesto Benbow”

Tarpaulin&Gentleman

Nella Marina inglese degli inizi vigeva il sistema dell’addestramento volontario: un capitano prendeva al servizio dei giovani e li istruiva fintanto che non fossero in grado di superare l’esame attitudinale. Restava comunque una linea di demarcazione tra il tarpaulin officer, privo di alto status sociale e il gentleman officer, l’aspirante privilegiato. Di fatto i gentlemen ottenevano la loro patente di guardiamarina più per relazioni di parentele a fronte di una preparazione in mare superficiale, cosicchè nel 1677 fu introdotto un esame di ammissione che doveva precedere un addestramento di tre anni obbligatorio (oppure il candidato doveva avere già fatto esperienza nella marina mercantile). Ma nel 1730 si preferì ritornare al vecchio sistema dell’addestramento volontario.

L’ULTIMA BATTAGLIA

La sua ultima battaglia, al largo di Capo Santa Marta sulle coste dell’attuale Colombia,  fu quella ingaggiata contro l’ammiraglio Jean Du Casse e la sua flotta: la battaglia con relativo inseguimento durò dal 19 al 25 agosto 1702; Benbow aveva al suo comando sette navi ma i suoi capitani si dimostrarono poco propensi ad ubbidire agli ordini: solo nel pomeriggio del primo giorno venne ingaggiato un combattimento e solo la nave ammiraglia e la Ruby sotto il capitano George Walton si diedero all’inseguimento delle navi francesi con l’intento di dare battaglia mentre le altre navi si mantenevano defilate. La Ruby fu messa fuori combattimento il 22 e a questo punto la Falmouth  al comando di Samuel Vincent decise di schierarsi con Benbow, ma venne seriamente danneggiata e costretta a ritirarsi, lo stesso Benbow assediato dalle navi francesi e sottoposto a una bordata di cannonate si trovò con una gamba maciullata e venne portato sottocoperta, dove si tenne un consiglio di guerra con i suoi ufficiali nel frattempo riunitisi tutti a bordo dell’ammiraglia.
Per vedere in dettaglio l’azione di guerra vedi qui

dal film Master and Commander

Benbow era determinato a proseguire l’inseguimento per dar battaglia ma i suoi capitani ritenendo di non avere possibilità di vittoria raccomandavano di limitarsi a inseguire le navi francesi: Benbow convinto che si stesse mettendo in atto un ammutinamento nei suoi confrontii diede l’ordine di tornare in Giamaica e mandò i suoi comandanti davanti alla corte marziale con l’accusa di insubordinazione; il capitano Richard Kirby e il capitano Cooper Wade vennero riconosciuti colpevoli e fucilati. Nonostante l’amputazione della gamba  Benbow morì due mesi dopo la battaglia e venne sepolto a Kingston.

ADMIRAL BENBOW DI CECIL SHARP

La melodia è altrettanto popolare e si accomuna alla ballata Captain Kidd dando vita a una sorta di famiglia melodica utilizzata per varie canzoni.
Tra le canzoni del mare nella serie Sea Shanty Edition per il quarto episodio del video-gioco Assassin’s Creed si annoverano alcune ballate sui capitani coraggiosi, per celebrarne le vittorie o le gesta eroiche che li hanno portati alla morte.
La versione in Assassin’s Creed dal testo trascritto da Cecil Sharp sul canto del Capitano Lewis di Minehead (1906) le strofe però sono dimezzate (I, II, VI)


I
Come all you seamen bold
and draw near, and draw near
Come all you seamen bold and draw near
It’s of an Admiral’s fame Brave Benbow (1) was his name
How he sailed up on the main (2)
you shall hear, you shall hear
II
Brave Benbow he set sail
For to fight, for to fight
Brave Benbow he set sail
For to fight
Brave Benbow he set sail in a keen and pleasant gale
But his captains they turn’d tail in a fright (3), in a fright
III
Says Kirby unto Wade (4), “We will run, we will run.”
Says Kirby unto Wade, “We will run. For I value no disgrace
nor the losing of my place
But the enemy I won’t face
Nor his guns, nor his guns.”
IV
The Ruby (5) and Benbow fought the French, fought the French,
The Ruby and Benbow Fought the French.
They fought them up and down
‘Til the blood came trickling down
‘Til the blood came trickling down Where they lay, where they lay.
V
Brave Benbow lost his legs
By chain shot, by chain shot,
Brave Benbow lost his legs
By chain shot.
Brave Benbow lost his legs
And all on his stumps he begs
“Fight on, my English lads
‘Tis our lot, ‘tis our lot.”
VI
The surgeon dress’d his wounds Benbow cried, Benbow cried
The surgeon dress’d his wounds Benbow cried
“Let a cradle now in haste on the quarterdeck (6) be placed
That the enemy I may face
‘Til I die, ‘Til I die
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
I
Bravi marinai venite tutti più vicino, più vicino,
Bravi marinai venite tutti
più vicino,
vi voglio raccontare del coraggioso Ammiraglio Benbow
di come navigava in mare
ascoltate, ascoltate.
II
Il coraggioso  Benbow alzò le vele
per lottare, per lottare
il coraggioso  Benbow alzò le vele
per lottare,
il coraggioso  Benbow alzò le vele
con un vento forte di burrasca
ma i suoi capitani fuggirono per vigliaccheria , per vigliaccheria.
III
Disse Kirby a Wade “Scappiamo
scappiamo”
Disse Kirby a Wade “Scappiamo
perchè non valuto il disonore
o la perdita della mia posizione,
ma i nemici non voglio affrontare
e nemmeno i loro cannoni, i cannoni”
IV
La Ruby e Benbow combattevano  i francesi, combattevano i francesi.  la Ruby e Benbow combattevano francesi
li combatterono in lungo e in largo
finchè il sangue iniziò a sgorgare
finchè il sangue iniziò a sgorgare,
à dove stavano, là dove stavano
V
Il coraggioso Benbow perse le sue gambe, per un colpo di cannone,
il coraggioso Benbow perse le sue gambe, per un colpo di cannone
il coraggioso Benbow perse le sue gambe, e sulle stampelle implora
” Combattete, inglesi
è il nostro destino, il nostro destino”
VI
Il chirurgo fasciò le sue ferite
Benbow gridò, Benbow gridò
Il chirurgo fasciò le sue ferite
Benbow gridò
“Portatemi subito una culla
e mettetela sul cassero
che i nemici combatterò
fino alla morte, fino alla morte.”
Mary Evans Picture Library : J R Skelton in Lang, “Outposts of Empire” 1910

NOTE
1) Benbow fece carriera nei ranghi della Marina Inglese sul finire del 1600 fino a diventare Vice-Ammiraglio
2) il mare delle Indie Occidentali
3) in a fright: in preda al panico
4) i capitani che abbandonarono la battaglia vennero processati e condannati a morte per diserzione
5) la nave Ruby sostenne l’attacco  dell’ammiraglia Breda contro i vascelli francesi
6) Benbow nonostante la gamba ferita (che gli verrà amputata) vuole continuare a impartire gli ordini  sul ponte di comando e così richiede una culla per poter restare seduto e distendere la gamba maciullata, fasciata in modo provvisorio dal medico di bordo (non sappiamo cosa ci facesse una culla a bordo di una nave da guerra e in effetti in altre versioni diventa una brandina o  un lettino)

LA VERSIONE DELLA FAMIGLIA COPPER

Paul Clayton, in “Whaling and sailing songs from the days of Moby Dick” 1954


I
It was often at Marais
Calling Benbow by his name
He fought on the raging main
You must know
Oh, the ship rocks up and down
And the shots are flying round
The enemy tumbling down
There they lay, there they lay
II
‘Twas Reuben (1) and Benbow
Fought the French, fought the French
‘Twas Reuben and Benbow
Fought the French,
Down on his old stump he fell
And so loudly he did call
Fight ye on, me English lads
‘Tis my lot, ’tis my lot
III
When the doctor dressed his wound
Benbow cried, Benbow cried
When the doctor dressed his wound
Benbow cried,
Let a bed be fetched in haste
On the quarterdeck be placed
That the enemy I might face
‘Til I die, ’til I die
IV
On Tuesday morning last
Benbow died, Benbow died
On Tuesday morning last
Benbow died
What a shocking sight to see
When Benbow was carried away
He was carried to Kingston church (2)
There he lay, there he lay
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
I
Spesso si trovava a Marais
si chiamava Benbow di nome,
di come combattè in mare
dovete sapere.
Oh la nave rollava su e giù
e i colpi volavano
il nemico facevano a pezzi
là dove stavano, là dove stavano
II
C’erano la Ruby e Benbow
a combattere i francesi, combattere i francesi. C’erano Reuben e Benbow
a combattere i francesi
dal suo moncone cadde
e così forte gridò
” Continuate a combattere, inglesi
è la mia sorte, è la mia sorte”
III
Quando il dottore fasciò la ferita
Benbow gridò, Benbow gridò
quando il dottore fasciò la ferita
Benbow gridò
“Che un lettino sia subito
portato sul cassero
che i nemici combatterò
finchè non morirò, finchè non morirò.”
IV
Il mattino di martedì scorso
Benbow morì, Benbow morì,
il mattino di martedì scorso
Benbow morì
che orribile visione
quando Benbow fu portato via
fu portato alla chiesa di Kingston
là giace, là giace.

NOTE
1) la nave Ruby sostenne l’attacco  dell’ammiraglia Breda contro i vascelli francesi
2) fu sepolto nella Chiesa Parrocchiale di Kingston (Giamaica)

ADMIRAL BENBOW DI WILLIAM CHAPPELL

Intitolata “Benbow, the Brother Tar’s song” la ballata fu trascritta da William Chappel nel suo “Old English Popular Music”.
“La melodia è una variante di Love Will Find Out the Way, pubblicata per la prima volta nel 1651. Inizialmente circolava nei salotti alla moda, ma dopo il 1680 passò nelle canzoni della classe lavoratrice in paricolare dei contadini. Chappell la collezionò tra i raccoglitori di luppolo a metà del XIX secolo e Lucy Broadwood la trovò nel Sussex nel 1898.” (tratto da qui)
Il racconto della battaglia è molto impreciso
June Tabor & Martin Simpson in A cut above, 1982


I
We sailed from Virginia
and thence to Fayall
Where we watered our shipping
and then we weighed all.
Full in view on the seas, boys,
seven sails we did espy;
We mannéd our capstans
and weighed speedily.
II
Now the first we come up with was a brigantine sloop (1)
And we asked if the others was as big as they looked;
Ah, but turning to windward,
as near as we could lie (2)
We saw there were ten (3) men of war cruising by.
III
We drew up our squadron in very nice line
And boldly we fought them for full four hours time;
But the day being spent, boys, and the night a-coming on
We left them alone till the early next morn.
IV
Now the very next morning the engagement proved hot
And brave Admiral Benbow received a chain shot;
And as he was wounded to his merry men he did say,
“Take me up in your arms, boys, and carry me away!”
V
Now the guns they did rattle and the bullets did fly,
But brave Admiral Benbow for help would not cry;
“Take me down to the cockpit, there is ease for my smarts,
If my merry men see me, it would sure break their hearts.”
VI
Now, the very next morning by break of the day
They hoisted their topsails and so bore away;
We bore to Port Royal where the people flocked much
To see Admiral Benbow carried to Kingston Church (4).
VII
Come all you brave fellows, wherever you’ve been,
Let us drink to the health of our King and our Queen,
And another good health to the girls that we know,
And a third in remembrance (5) of great Admiral Benbow.
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
I
Siamo salpati da Virginia
e poi da Fayall
dove abbiamo  imbarcato le provviste d’acqua poi siamo salpati.
In piena vista sui mari, ragazzi,
sette vele abbiamo adocchiato;
abbiamo levato l’ancora
e salpato rapidamente.
II
La prima nave che raggiungemmo era un brigantino
e abbiamo chiesto se gli altri erano grandi come sembravano;
Ah, ma virando al vento,
più vicino che si poteva
abbiamo visto che c’erano dieci navi da guerra che s’avvicinavano
III
Abbiamo schieratola nostra batteria in una linea molto precisa
e arditamente li abbiamo combattuti per ben quattro ore;
ma la giornata era trascorsa, ragazzi, e la notte stava arrivando
li abbiamo lasciati soli fino al mattino seguente.
IV
La mattina dopo, la battaglia si è dimostrato rovente
e il coraggioso Admiral Benbow ha ricevuto un colpo di cannone;
e mentre era ferito ai suoi uomini, ha detto,
“Prendetemi tra le vostre braccia, ragazzi, e portami via!”
V
Ora i cannoni hanno tuonato e le pallottole fischiato,
ma il coraggioso ammiraglio Benbow  non avrebbe pianto per chiedere aiuto;
“Portami giù nella cabina, per dare sollievo ai miei dolori
se i miei uomini mi vedessero, si spezzerebbero i loro cuori. ”
VI
Ora, il giorno dopo, al sorgere
del sole
loro [le navi francesi] issarono le vele e così si allontanarono;
noi ci portammo a Port Royal, dove la gente si affollava
per  vedere l’Ammiraglio Benbow portato a Kingston Church.
VII
Vieni tutti bravi compagni, ovunque voi siate
Beviamo alla salute del nostro re e della nostra regina,
un altro brindisi alla salute delle ragazze che conosciamo,
e il terzo in ricordo del grande ammiraglio Benbow.

NOTE
1) Il termine è di origine italiana (derivato da brigante, nella sua espressione originaria di componente una brigata, cioè gruppo di più persone da cui il termine). Infatti nel Quattrocento e nel Cinquecento il brigantino a vele latine era utilizzato frequentemente come unità per la guerra di corsa e la pirateria. Il brigantino era impiegato principalmente come cargo o nave di scorta; ebbe grande diffusione nel Mar Mediterraneo e nell’Europa del nord. (da wikipedia)
Le navi da guerra francesi al comando dell’ammiraglio Du Casse stavano scortando un convoglio di trasporto truppe. la nave ammiraglia Breda catturò la galera Anne , originariamente una nave inglese catturata dai francesi
2) è l’andatura di bolina quando la nave “stringe il vento”
3) le navi da guerra francesi erano in realtà solo 5 (come scorta alle navi da carico)
4) Benbow fu sepolto nella Chiesa Parrocchiale di Kingston (Giamaica)
5) in suo onore Robert Louis Stevenson nel suo libro “L’isola del Tesoro” inserisce una “Admiral Benbow Innall’inizio della storia

FONTI
https://www.historytoday.com/sam-willis/dark-side-admiral-benbow
http://bravebenbow.com/
http://bravebenbow.com/?page_id=136
http://mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=137
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2169
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=109642
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=56280
http://reelyredd.com/admiral-benbow-song.htm

https://mainlynorfolk.info/copperfamily/songs/admiralbenbow.html
https://mainlynorfolk.info/june.tabor/songs/admiralbenbow.html

HAULEY HAULEY HO

Breve sea shanty molto british presente nella raccolta Black Flag per la serie Assassin Creed!


Chorus
England, ould Ireland
England, ould Ireland
England, ould Ireland
Hauley Hauley Ho!
Paddy M’Ginty
Paddy (1), Jock (2) and Jackie too.
Oh Paddy M’Ginty,
Hauley (3), Hauley-ho!
Shamrock an’ Rose, boys.
Shamrock, Rose, and prickly Thistle (4) too,
Shamrock an’ Rose, boys,
Hauley Hauley Ho!
Tradotto da Cattia Salto
Coro
Inghilterra, vecchia Irlanda
Inghilterra, vecchia Irlanda
Inghilterra, vecchia Irlanda
Oh issa!
Paddy Mac Ginty
Paddy, Jock e anche Jackie.
Oh Paddy Mac Ginty,
Oh issa!
Il trifoglio e la rosa, ragazzi
Il trifoglio, la rosa e anche il cardo (3)
Il trifoglio e la rosa, ragazzi
Oh issa!

NOTE
1) paddy è il nomignolo affibiato al tipico irlandese
2) Jock è la versione scozzese del nome Jack (in italiano Giacomo)
3) to haul= alare è un termine nautico che si dice per tirare con forza una cima (per i terricoli un cavo) orizzontalmente o verticalmente
4) sono i tre simboli floreali che stanno per Irlanda, Inghilterra e Scozia, raffigurati in genere con la rosa Tudor al centro (a volte coronata) per rappresentare il Regno Unito di Gran Bretagna e Irlanda del Nord

 

SO EARLY IN THE MORNING

ALTRI TITOLI: The Sailor Likes His Bottle-O, the Bottle-O, The Sailor Loves (likes) His Bottle-o, The Sailor’s Loves

Testimonianze e trascrizioni di questa canzoncina sulle passioni di un marinaio (per altro molto popolare tra i marinai del “cotton trade” con le Indie Occidentali) risalgono agli anni 1840-50, ma si ipotizza l’uso come sea shanty già negli anni 1830. Non si sa nemmeno se “So early in the morning” sia nata come canto di lavoro degli schiavi neri, secondo la testimonianza di Stan Hugill  era popolare tra gli equipaggi composti da novellini per la sua versatilità che la adattava alle più svariate manovre sia alle vele che all’argano e alle pompe.

Alla triade Bacco, Tabacco e Venere lo shantyman aggiungeva le improvvisazioni più disparate, e così si annoverano risse e scazzottate ma anche le belle canzoni

ASCOLTA da Assassin’s Creed IV,  Black Flag


The mate was drunk
and he went below
to take a swig at his bottle o
So early in the morning
the sailor likes his bottle o

The bottle o, the bottle o, the sailor loves his bottle o
A bottle of rum, a bottle of gin, a bottle of Irish whiskey o
The baccy(1) o, tabaccy o, the sailor loves his baccy o
A packet of shag (2), a packet of cut, a plug of hard terbaccy o
The lassies o, the maidens o, the sailor loves the judies(3) o
A lass from the ‘pool, a girl from the Tyne,
a chowlah(4) so fine and dandy o
A bully rough house, a bully rough house,
the sailor like his rough house o
Tread on me coat, and all hands in, a bully good rough and tumble o
A sing song o, a sing song o, the sailor likes a sing song o
A drinking song, a song of love, a ditty of seas and shipmates o
traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
Il primo era ubriaco
e andò sottocoperta
per dare un sorso alla bottiglia
Già di primo mattino
il marinaio ama la sua bottiglia oh
La bottiglia, la bottiglia, il marinaio ama la sua bottiglia, oh una bottiglia di rum, una bottiglia di gin, una bottiglia di whiskey irlandese oh
Bacco, tabacco, il marinaio ama il suo tabacco oh, un pacchetto di tabacco da rollare, un pacchetto di trinciato, una presa di tabacco forte oh
Le ragazze, le fanciulle, il marinaio ama le ganze oh
una ragazza di Liverpool, una ragazza da Tyne, una donnina così bella ed elegante oh
Una rissa da strada, una rissa da strada, il marinaio ama la rissa oh
pestare i piedi, con tutto l’equipaggio, una bella sanguinosa zuffa oh
Una canzone da cantare, una canzone da cantare, il marinaio ama cantare una canzone
un canto di bevute, un canto d’amore, una storiella di mari e marinai oh

NOTE
1) baccy deriva dalla parola “tobacco”, come tutto il gioco di parole tabaccy e terbaccy
2) tabacco trinciato
3) le ragazze di Liverpool (dialetto locale)
4) nomignolo sempre riferito alle ragazze

ASCOLTA Jeff Warner in Short Sharp Shanties : Sea songs of a Watchet sailor vol 2 (su spotify)


So early in the morning
the sailor likes his bottle o
A bottle of rum, a bottle of gin, a bottle of old jamaica o
A bottle of vine, a bottle of beer, a bottle of Irish whiskey o
A packet of shag, a packet of twist, a plug of hard terbaccy o
Spanish girl, irish girl the sailor likes the lassies o
Yanky girl, ??dian girl a smiling young mulatta
A drinking song, a loving song, a sailor and his shipmates
traduzione italiano di Cattia Salto
Già di primo mattino
il marinaio ama la sua bottiglia oh
Una bottiglia di rum, una bottiglia di gin, una bottiglia di giamaicano invecchiato, una bottiglia di vino, una bottiglia di birra, una bottiglia di
whiskey irlandese oh.
Un pacchetto di tabacco da rollare, un pacchetto di trinciato, una presa di tabacco forte oh
Una spagnola, un irlandese, il marinaio ama le ragazze oh. Un’americana, .. una giovane mulatta sorridente
un canto di bevute, un canto d’amore, il marinaio e i compagni della nave oh

FONTI
http://www.contemplator.com/sea/sloves.html
http://www.shanty.org.uk/archive_songs/bottle-o.html