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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Lesley N. Origin: Rule Britannia/Married to a Mermaid (53* d) RE: Rule Britannia/Married to Mermaid 27 Nov 99

Good point! The problem is probably that I've never stamped around a capstan and haven't a clue what time would be best! I suspect ANY music would be helpful at such a time as long as it got everyone into the same rythym - well, maybe a rhumba wouldn't be so great.

Spanish Ladies is one of my favorite tunes which is also why I pick on it as an example of a workless shanty (from this lubbers point of view that is). I'd forgotten about the tutorial aspect of it. However, some of that has always amused me as the line from Ushant to Scily is ____ leagues is variously given as 34, 35 and 45 - and the depth of the Channel also varies from 55 to 45 fathoms by version. Exactly how many leagues IS Ushant from Sicily? But, of course, these could have been messed up when the song settled on land - and the depth of the channel probably varies anyway...

Interesting stuff about it being the only song allowed. I'd love to find a good book on shanties in the services. I just found a terrific one about grog ("Nelson's Blood") and am going to put a page on my website about that much neglected subject. (Dad was a sea captain - unfortunately in the US Navy, which stopped issuing grog in 1862 - but as a result we have the terrific song Farewell to Grog.)

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