The Battle Eve of the Brigade

Melody -

Thomas Davis

The mess-tent is full
And the glasses are set,
And the gallant Count Thomond
Is President yet.
The vet'ran arose,
Like an uplifted lance,
Crying, "Comrades, a health to
The Monarch of France!"
With bumpers and cheers
They have done as he bade,
For King Louis is loved
By the Irish Brigade.

"A health to King James,"
And they bent as they quaffed,
"Here's to George the Elector,"
And fiercely they laughed,
"Good luck to the girls
We woo'd long ago,
Where Shannon, and Barrow
And Avondhu flow';
"God prosper Old Ireland,"
You'd think them afraid,
So pale grew the chiefs of
The Irish Brigade.
  But surely, that light
Cannot come from our lamp?
And that noise - are they all
Getting drunk in the camp?
"Hurrah! boys, the morning
Of battle is come;
And the generale's beating
On many a drum."
So they rush from the revel
To join the parade,
For the van is the right of
The Irish Brigade.

They fought as they revelled -
Fast, fiery, and true,
And though victors, they left
On the field not a few:
And they, who survived,
Fought and drank as of yore,
But the land of their heart's hope
They never saw more,
For in far foreign fields,
From Dunkirk to Belgrade,
Lie the soldiers and chiefs of
The Irish Brigade.

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