Page:Notes and Queries - Series 11 - Volume 11.djvu/319

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11 8. XL APRIL 17, 1915.] NOTES AND QUERIES.


309


According to Julian's ' Dictionary of Hymnology ' (1892), Chorley's hymn " God the All-terrible ! King who ordainest," was written for a Russian air, and first printed in 1842. H. KREBS.

Oxford.

I have a little book called ' Hymnes et Chants Nationaux de tons les Pays,' by Ote. Eugene de Lonlay, 2nd ed., no date, bought in Paris, 1890. In it, p. 20, is ' Hymne Russe Musique de Lvof.' It is a prose translation into French. I offer the follow- ing English version of the French :

God, guard the Czar strong arid victorious, may he reign for our glory,and may he be the terror of our enemies, our triumphant Czar ! God save the Czar !

God, let Thine eyes (ton regard) hover and watch over his family incessantly ; avert from his face the shadow of a cloud. For our happiness lengthen his days.

God save the Czar !

I use the word " save " in accordance with its meaning in our National Anthem.

Preceding this hymn is (p. 17) the * Chant National Moscovite ' :

Long live our mighty Emperor of Russia ! Take your places in the ranks of battle, and sing songs in honour of the Czar and of the people. May glory from generation to generation attend our mighty monarch and our victorious nation !

Long live our mighty Emperor of Russia ! There have been times when misfortunes have fallen upon us. But more than once we put the enemy to rout on our fields of battle to the rum- bling din (bruit sourd) of our cannon.

Long live our mighty Emperor of Russia ! The eagle, guide of our troops, sleeps not ; he has spread his wings, and the world is amazed at the glory of the fathers and of the sons of whom Russia is proud.

Long live our mighty Emperor of Russia ! We have had our glorious festivals of Poltawa ; Ismail, Kagoul, Rimuick, are our heroes. The defence of Moscow, the burning of the Kremlin, bear witness to our valour, and the Russian bayonets have reached the very breasts of the foreigner.

Long live the mighty Emperor of' Russia ! Behind the Balkans, the ancient enemy is affrighted by the Russian army, and our eagle stretches his wings over the Bosphorus and over the ramparts of the Sultan.

Long live the mighty Emperor of Russia ! Be proud, noble Russia, of thy dauntless nation ; from Kamtchatka to the Don is heard the voice of our compatriots.

Long live the mighty Emperor of Russia !

If the * Hymne Russe ' as above is a trans- lation of the ' Russian National Anthem,'


it may, I. think, be taken as accurate, seeing that the translation into French of our National Anthem in the same book is about as exact and literal as it could be. The same may be said of the translation of ' Rule, Britannia.'

To the three stanzas of our National Anthem are appended three additional stanza.s, translated into French prose the first about Queen Victoria, the second about " le couple royal " and " 1'heritier legitime de TAngleterre," the third about Prince Albert.

This, together with the ' Hymne a Pie IX.,' suggests that the book which I am quoting was published originally some fifty years

ago. ROBERT PlERPOINT.

" THE TUNE THE OLD COW DIED OF "

(11 S. xi. 248). In America this phrase is used merely to characterize a grotesque or unpleasant song or tune. Among the peasantry of Scotland and the north of Ireland it usually retains its original meaning of a homily in lieu of alms, and is a reference to the old ballad of the cow- herd who, having no fodder for his cow, sought to assuage her hunger by a com- fortable and suggestive tune. This is how the ballad begins :

Jack Whaley had a cow,

.And he had naught to feed her ;

He took his pipe and played a tune, And bid the cow consider.

At a sale of the library of the Rev. Thomas Alexander in 1874 there was sold a poem in the handwriting of Thomas Cartyle which sounds like a playful parody of the above, embodying as it does a favourite moral of the sage's :

There was a piper had a cow,

And he had nocht to give her ; He took his pipe and played a spring,

And bade the cow consider.

The cow considered wi' hersel*

That mirth wad never fill her : " Give me a pickle ait strae,

And sell your wind for siller."

AKCHIBALD SPARKE, F.R.S.L.

One of the explanations for this phrase is that long years ago there were two famous Scottish pipers, father and son, named Nathaniel Gow. On the death of the elder of these, the survivor composed a * Lament ' in honour of his sire. This gradually te- came known as " The tune the old Gow died of," and in course of time " Gow " became corrupted into " cow " ! E. STAFFORD*