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OLD SONG

Drink boys, drink boys,
  Drive away your sorrow!
      - [Proverbs]

God rest you, merry gentlemen,
  Let nothing you dismay,
    For Jesus Christ our Saviour
      Was born upon this day,
        To save us all from Satan's power
          When we were gone astray.
            O tidings of comfort and joy,
              For Jesus Christ our Saviour was
                Born on Christmas Day.
      - old English song [Christmas]

It is good to be merry and wise,
  It is good to be honest and true,
    It is best to be off with the old love,
      Before you are on with the new.
      - published in "Songs of England and Scotland", London, 1835, vol. II, p. 73
        [Love : Proverbs]

Oh! we'll give 'em Jessie
  When we rally round the polls.
      - a popular song of Fremont's supporters in the U.S. Presidential Campaign of 1856
        [Politics]

Old soldiers never die;
  They fade away!
      - war song, popular in England (1919)
        [Proverbs : Soldiers]

Then what is the use of repining?
  For where there's a will there's a way.
    To-morrow the sun may be shining
      Although it is cloudy to-day.
      - [Today]

St. George he was for England; St. Dennis was for France.
  Sing, "Honi soit qui mal y pense."
      - Black-letter Ballad, London, 1512
        [Royalty]

Who passes down this road so late?
  Compagnon de la Majaloine?
    Who passes down this road so late,
      Always gay!
        Of all the King's Knights 'tis the flower,
          Compagnon de la Majaloine,
            Of all the King's Knights 'tis the flower,
              Always gay!
      - Compagnon De la Majaloine--Old French Song
        [Soldiers]

Let the farmer praise his grounds,
  Let the huntsman praise his hounds,
    The shepherd his dew scented lawn,
      But I more blessed than they,
        Spend each happy night and day
          With my charming little cruiskeen lan, lan, lan.
      - Cruiskeen Lawn, an Irish song [Drinking]

D'ye ken John Peel with his coat so gay?
  D'ye ken John Peel at the break of the day?
    D'ye ken John Peel when he's far, far away,
      With his hounds and his horn in the morning?
      - John Peel, an old hunting song [Chase]

This animal is very malicious; when attacked it defends itself.
  [Fr., Cet animal est tres mechant;
    Quand on l'attaque il se defend.]
      - La Menagerie, a song [Animals]

When Madelon comes out to serve us drinks,
  We always know she's coming by her song.
    And every man he tells his little tale,
      And Madelon is never too severe--
        A kiss or two is nothing much to her--
          She laughs us up to love and life and God--
            Madelon, Madelon, Madelon.
      - Madelon--Song of the French Soldiers in the Great War
        [Love]

Marlbrough s'en va-t-en guerre,
  Mironton, mironton, mirontaine,
    Marlbrough s'en va-t-en guerre,
      Ne sait quand reviendra.
      - Marbrough (or Marlebrouck) S'en va-t-en Guerre,
        old French song, attributed to Mme. de Sevigne, found in "Rondes avec Jeux et Petites Chansons traditionnelles", published by Augener
        [War]

I'd just as soon a beggar as king,
  And the reason I'll tell you for why;
    A king cannot swagger, not drink like a beggar,
      Nor be half so happy as I.
        . . . .
          Let the back and side go bare.
      - Old English Folk Song--Folk Songs from Somerset,
        by Cecil Sharpe [Beggary]

The poor man will praise it so hath he good cause,
  That all the year eats neither partridge not quail,
    But sets up his rest and makes up his feast,
      With a crust of brown bread and a pot of good ale.
      - Old English Song,
        from "An Antidote Against Melancholy"
        [Eating]

When Bryan O'Lynn had no shirt to put on,
  He took him a sheep skin to make him a' one.
    "With the skinny side out, and the wooly side in,
      'Twill be warm and convanient," said Bryan O'Lynn.
      - Old Irish Song [Nonsense]

Old Rose is dead, that good old man,
  We ne'er shall see him more;
    He used to wear an old blue coat
      All buttoned down before.
      - Old Rose (pt. I, ch. II),
        song referred to in Izaak Walton's "Compleat Angler"
        [Apparel]

Let the back and sides go bare, my boys,
  Let the hands and the feet gang cold;
    But give to belly, boys, beer enough,
      Whether it be new or old.
      - The Beggar, old English folk song
        [Drinking]

Over the hills and o'er the main,
  To Flanders, Portugal and Spain,
    Queen Anne commands and we'll obey,
      Over the hills and far away.
      - The Merry Companion (song 173, p. 149)
        [Mountains]

Landlord fill the flowing bowl
  Until it doth run over;
    For to-night we'll merry be
      To-morrow we'll be sober.
      - Three Jolly Postboys, 18th century song
        [Drinking]

In good King Charles's golden days
  When royalty no harm meant,
    A zealous high-churchman was I,
      And so I got preferment.
      - Vicar of Bray, written before 1710
        [Royalty]

The more we work, the more we may,
  It makes no difference to our pay.
      - We Are the Royal Sappers,
        war song, popular in England (1916)
        [Soldiers]


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