Sea Shanty: “Spanish Ladies”

Traditional – Lyrics from Shanties from the Seven Seas, by Stan Hugill

Farewell an’ adieu to you fair Spanish ladies,
Farewell an’ adieu to you ladies of Spain,
For we’ve received orders for to sail for old England,
An’ hope very shortly to see you again.

We’ll rant an’ we’ll roar, like true British sailors,
We’ll rant an’ we’ll rave across the salt seas,
‘Till we strike soundings in the Channel of Old England,
From Ushant to Scilly is thirty-four leagues.

We hove our ship to, with the wind at sou’west, boys,
We hove our ship to for to take soundings clear.
In fifty-five fathoms with a fine sandy bottom,
We filled our maintops’l, up Channel did steer.

The first land we made was a point called the Deadman,
Next Ramshead off Plymouth, Start, Portland, and Wight.
We sailed then by Beachie, by Fairlee and Dungeyness,
Then bore straight away for the South Foreland Light.

Now the signal was made for the Grand Fleet to anchor,
We clewed up our tops’ls, stuck out tacks and sheets.
We stood by our stoppers, we brailed in our spankers,
And anchored ahead of the noblest of fleets.

Let every man here drink up his full bumper,
Let every man here drink up his full bowl,
And let us be jolly and drown melancholy,
Drink a health to each jovial an’ true-hearted soul.