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For we brought them all aboard,
And they blest him in their pain, that they were not

left to Spain, To the thumbscrew and the stake, for the glory of the

Lord. He had only a hundred seamen to work the ship and to

fight, And he sailed away from Flores till the Spaniard came

in sight, With his huge sea-castles heaving upon the weather

bow. “Shall we fight or shall we fly? Good Sir Richard, tell us now, For to fight is but to die! There'll be little of us left by the time this sun be set." And Sir Richard said again: "We be all good English


Let us bang these dogs of Seville, the children of the

devil, For I never turn'd my back upon Don or devil yet." Sir Richard spoke and he laugh'd, and we roar'd a

hurrah, and so The little Revenge ran on sheer into the heart of the

foe, With her hundred fighters on deck, and her ninety-sick

below; For half of their fleet to the right and half to the left

were seen. And the little Revenge ran on thro' the long sea-lane

between. Thousands of their soldiers looked down from their

decks and laugh'd,

Thousands of their seamen made mock at the mad

little craft Running on and on, till delay'd By their mountain-like San Philip that, of fifteen hun

dred tons, And up-shadowing high above us with her yawning

tiers of guns, Took the breath from our sails, and we stay'd. And while now the great San Philip hung above us like

a cloud Whence the thunderbolt will fall Long and loud, Four galleons drew away From the Spanish fleet that day, And two upon the larboard and two upon the starboard

lay, And the battle-thunder broke from them all. But anon the great San Philip, she bethought herself

and went Having that within her womb that had left her ill con

tent; And the rest they came aboard us, and they fought us

hand to hand, For a dozen times they came with their pikes and

inusqueteers, And a dozen times we shook 'em off as a dog that

shakes his ears When he leaps from the water to the land. And the sun went do and the stars came out far

over the summer sea, But never a moment ceased the fight of the one and

the fifty-three.

Ship after ship, the whole night long, their high-built

galleons came, Ship after ship, the whole night long, with her battle.

thunder and flame; Ship after ship, the whole night long, drew back with

her dead and her shame. For some were sunk and many were shatter'd, and so

could fight us no moreGod of battles, was ever a battle like this in the world


For he said, “Fight on! fight on!"
Though his vessel was all but a wreck;
And it chanced that, when half of the short summer

night was gone, With a grisly wound to be drest he had left the deck, But a bullet struck him that was dressing it suddenly

dead, And himself he was wounded again in the side and the

head, And he said, “Fight on! fight on!"

And the night went down, and the sun smiled out far

over the summer sea, And the Spanish fleet with broken sides lay round us

all in a ring; But they dared not touch us again, for they fear'd that

we still could sting,
So they watch'd what the end would be.
And we had not fought them in vain,
But in perilous plight were we,
Seeing forty of our poor hundred were slain,
And half of the rest of us maim'd for life

In the crash of the cannonades and the desperate

strife; And the sick men down in the hold were most of them

stark and cold, And the pikes were all broken or bent, and the powder

was all of it spent; And the masts and the rigging were lying over the

side; But Sir Richard cried in his English pride, “We have fought such a fight for a day and a night As may never be fought again! We have won great glory, my men! And a day less or more At sea or ashore, We die-does it matter when? Sink me the ship, Master Gunner-sink her, split her

in twain ! Fall into the hands of God, not into the hands of


And the gunner said, “Ay, ay," but the seamen made

reply: “We have children, we have wives, And the Lord hath spared our lives. We will make the Spaniards promise, if we yield, to let

us go;

We shall live to fight again and to strike another

blow." And the lion there lay dying, and they yielded to the


And the stately Spanish men to their flagship bore him


Where they laid him by the mast, old Sir Richard

caught at last, And they praised him to his face with their courtly

foreign grace; But he rose upon their decks, and he cried: I have fought for Queen and Faith like a valiant man

and true; I have only done my duty as a man is bound to do: With a joyful spirit I, Sir Richard Grenville, die!" And he fell upon their decks, and he died. And they stared at the dead that had been so valiant

and true, And had holden the power and glory of Spain so

cheap That he dared her with one little ship and his English

few; Was he devil or man? He was devil for aught they

knew, But they sank his body with honour down into the

deep, And they mann'd the Revenge with a swarthier alien

crew, And away she sail'd with her loss and long'd for her

own; When a wind from the lands they had ruin'd awoke

from sleep, And the water began to heave and the weather to

moan, And or ever that evening ended a great gale blew, And a wave like the wave that is raised by an earth.

quake grew, Till it smote on their hulls and their sails and their

masts and their flags,

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