Virginia Barton

22 July 2017: A Little Extra

22 July 2017


Am feeling totally undone having missed the excellent Comments to the Commonplace Bastille Day, posted more than a week ago.

Many apologies, humbles (remember those?) and a breast-beating mea culpa. Do admit it is not like me to be so rude. It’s the excitement of the Snail of course, emerging from hiding, and creating small havoc.


The Commonplace on July 14th called forth more comment on National Anthems – a theme we have visited before I seem to remember.

I can see that you, Wellies, are a person with strong musical opinions. In these days of multi-cultural/ethnically diversified/secularised GB; I’m not sure that people would tolerate your godly alternative to God Save the Queen written by GK Chesterton; and can’t say I like it myself as a national anthem, apt as the first verse may seem. It’s awfully dismal. Thus:

O God of earth and altar,

Bow down and hear our cry,

Our earthly rulers falter,

Our people drift and die;

The walls of gold entomb us,

The swords of scorn divide,

Take not thy thunder from us,

But take away our pride. Etc. etc.


The USA’s anthem is tops in my book for rousing tunefulness. But what about Russia’s rather haunting melody? And the words..?

Russia holy nation, beloved country,

A mighty will, great glory!

These are yours for all time!

Be glorious our free motherland,

Age old union of fraternal people,

Popular wisdom given by our forebears,

Be glorious our country!

We are proud of you!   Etc. etc.

(A clunky translation, yes; but remember the tune?)


However Jack’s Battle Hymn of the Republic takes the biscuit in my book – wonderful music, inspirational words for all time.

May we now consider the subject closed.

(Unless someone will put in a word for Italy’s cheery little number?)


Beloved Snail the book, has broken out at last and the author is truly grateful for the kind reception it has received thus far. It is a far cry from Seaboys Revenge which didn’t even boast an apostrophe.

So to Nadine, and to Wellies, many thanks for your kind remarks which are an encouragement, dare I say it, to go on writing.

Now look what you’ve done!



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