Navigation Contest

by John Freeth (1790)

boat

Home

Song Menu

Reference

notes



Navigators, haste, away,
Mark the grand, th’ important day;
Since the business doth remain,
To be settled this Campaign,
Let which will of Loss despair,
Sure to win the Lawyers are.

Navigation Bills create,
Strange confusion, strange debate;
Public good, the stale pretence,
Mockery is to common sense;
With the old, and with the new,
Lucre is the only view.

Thro’ the chequer’d, fleeting year,
Toil and trouble, hope and fear,
Make the spirits ebb and flow,
Sometimes cheerful, sometimes low.
Ever craving is the mind,
True the content but few can find.

When the busytime’s at hand,
Mark the speculative band,
Never on the turf were seen,
Hearts for sporting, half so keen;
All is envy, noise, and rage...
’Tis a wrangling, gambling age.

Thus as Fortune’s wheel goes round,
Smiles and frowns by turns abound;
Time’s accounts to sum up all,
Beggars rise, and Bankers fall;
Ups and downs we daily see,
Life is all a Lottery.



broadside
The words for this song come from 'The Political Songster by John Freeth (published 1790).
The tune is given as "Come Ye Party Jangling Swains" which is the first line of a song sung to the tune named The Invitation. I'm presuming this is the tune that was used for this song, though it is difficult to see how the words fit in.


Music