1814.11 - "For A' That and A' That"

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British War Poetry in the Age of Romanticism 1793-1815, by Betty T. Bennet, Edited by Orianne Smith

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1814.11
For A' That and A' That
Walter Scott
The Scots Magazine, LXXVI (July 1814), p. 535

[A new Song to an old Tune].[1]

Sung at the first Meeting of the Pitt Club
of Scotland.

Written by Walter Scott Esq.

Tho' right be aft put down by strength,
    As mony a day we saw that,
The true and leilfu' cause at length
    Shall bear the grie for a' that.
For a' that an a' that,
    Guns, guillotines, and a' that,
The Fleur-de-lis, that lost her right,
    Is queen again for a' that!

We'll twine her in a friendly knot
    With England's rose and a' that,
The Shamrock shall not be forgot,
    For Wellington made bra' that.
The Thistle, tho' her leaf be rude,
    Yet faith we'll no misca' that,
She sheltered in her solitude
    The Fleur-de-lis, for a' that!

The Austrian Vine, the Prussian pine.
    (For Blucher's sake, hurra that,)
The Spanish olive too shall join,
    And bloom in peace for a' that.
Stout Russia's hemp, so surely twin'd
    Around our wreath we'll draw that,
And he that would the cord unbind,
    Shall have it for his gra-vat!

Or if to chock sae puir a sot,
    Your pity scorn to thraw that,
The Devil's Elbo' be his lot,
    Where he may sit and claw that.
In spite of slight, in spite of might
    In spite of brags and a' that,
The lads that battled for the right,
    Have won the day, and a' that!

There's ae bit spot I had forgot,
    They ca'd America that!
A coward plot her rats had got
    Their father's flag to gnaw that;
Now see it fly top-gallant high,
    Atlantic winds shall blaw that,
And Yankee loun, beware your croun,
    There's kames in hand to claw that!

For on the land, or on the sea,
    Where'er the breezes blaw that,
The British flag shall bear the grie,
    And win the day for a' that!


Notes

1. Scott's poem is based upon the Jacobite song For a' that and a' that which Burns also used for his famous egalitarian poem of 1795.

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