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The Warlike Lads of Russia

Nic Jones
Lingua: Inglese


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Una canzone ottocentesca, “A New Song—Bonaparte's Escape from Russia”, il cui testo, contenuto su di un foglio volante (broadsheet), fece da base per una sostanziale riscrittura da parte di Nicolas Paul "Nic" Jones, classe 1947, folksinger, chitarrista e violinista inglese attivo tra gli anni 60 e l’inizio degli anni 80 e tornato solo recentemente sulla scena.
Trovo il brano nella raccolta intitolata “Unearthed” pubblicata nel 2001, che contiene registrazioni di esibizioni live di Nic Jones precedenti al 1982.
Testo trovato su English Folk Music

Unearthed

I dati della disfatta francese nella campagna di Russia del 1812, così come citati nelle ultime strofe di questa canzone, sono sbagliati assai per sottostima. Gli storici ritengono che degli oltre 600.000 uomini che componevano la Grande Armata napoleonica ben 400.000 risultarono morti o dispersi e 100.000 almeno caddero prigionieri dei russi… Mi sono sempre chiesto come abbia fatto Hitler a cadere nello stesso errore di Napoleone… Se i nazisti non si fossero impelagati malamente sul fronte orientale forse l’esito della seconda guerra mondiale sarebbe stato diverso…
When Bonaparte from Poland into Muscovy went,
With all his troops and all his men, their minds were fully bent
For to take the Russian country, oh, they were full employ'd,
But the Russians fought against them and they soon did them destroy.

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

Now when from Muscovy City, oh, the Russians did retreat,
Neither Bonaparte nor all his men not any thing could get.
When from Muscovy City, oh, the Russians took their flight,
They set the town on fire and they burnt it down that night.

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

Now in a little while, oh, the Russians did attack,
Against Bonaparte and all his men, they killed and took and drove 'em back.
But the action being so hot, from right and left and front and rear,
“Oh, damn you,” says poor Bonaparte, “I'll stay no longer here.”

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

And away then went poor Bonaparte as fast as he could ride.
And the poor Frenchmen looked after him, saying, “Oh it's very hard
But to think you'd lead us all up here, and leave us to our fate.
Oh, you ought to stop along with us and help us in our state.”

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

And away then went poor Bonaparte as fast as he could run,
Over hedges and o'er ditches; he left horses, men, and guns.
His boxes and his matches, ammunition waggons too,
He left them all behind him; what else could poor Boney do?

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

Says he, “80,000 men from me they've kill'd and they've taken,
Besides 10,000 horses fine and 200 pieces of cannon;
And never more to Paris or French land I dare advance,
For if I do, I may be sure they'll teach me how to dance.”

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

So it's to conclude and thus to try and finish off my song,
Oh, Boney's men in Russia swear they wish they'd hold of him.
And the cruelest death they'd put him to that e'er a man befell.
“Oh, curse you,” says poor Bonaparte. “I'm clear of you all.”

Oh, the warlike lads of Russia, oh, they fought all in one mind;
Made Bonaparte to run and leave his troops behind.

inviata da Bernart Bartleby - 17/11/2016 - 10:09



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