St Georges Day

Happy St Georges day everyone.

The 23rd of April is a strange day to be ‘English’. It is the one day where we can celebrate being English, our achievements (and Disasters) of this small island and to look forward to the future and what being English will become.

Instead most people either ignore it completely or are embarrassed to talk about it for fear of being labelled a little UKIPer! Even worse are the UKIPers who use the day to go on racist rants about immigration!

England-football-fans-006

 

I had a brief discussion with an eminent FWW historian on Twitter who said he associates being English with the BNP from the 70’s and 80’s!!

I truly hope we have moved on the the 1970’s and the BNP hijacking the St George Cross, I feel more English than I do British, that is personal to me and I am proud to be English.

Many people will say but what is being English? To be honest I have no idea and surely that is the point. We are such a strange mix of peoples, ideas and cultures that we are one of the most eclectic and tolerant people on the planet (despite what the Daily Mail writes).

St George.

St George.

The Scots, Welsh and the Irish all celebrate their Patron saints days with gusto and I think we should to. Best way to celebrate? Go out for our national dish and have a curry!

I don’t normally write social commentary just for the fact that I’m a rubbish writer so I will end with a poem I recently found. It was written by Lieutenant Colonel Henry Tyndall and was written in 1901.

He wrote for the Standard newspaper in response to the question ‘Is the English Nation deteriorating?’

Though a lot of the poem now is outdated in terms of Empire it is interesting to see that his attitude to politicians wouldn’t be out of place in today’s society.  It is also poignant that he believes that the ‘might’ of the Empire will keep the peace but says that if the call comes he hopes they will do their duty.

Just over a decade after he wrote this, Tyndall would be fighting in East Africa against the Germans and he did his duty. He also fought in the 3rd Afghan war and served most of his career in India.

 

Our forefathers, by land and sea,

Have kept the flag of England free

From blot or stain; and so will we

Hand down to posterity 

The emblem of our dear country.

So listen all

To duty’s call

That no mishap our flag befall.

While gladly for our land we die

 And in the list of honour try

to keep our flag unfurled on high;

Rises the traitor’s evil cry,

The vile, despiteful, selfish lie,

So listen all etc.

Here pseudo-politicians gain

Their votes by statements false and vain,

there men are found, yet scarcely sane,

Unworthy of their fair domain,

Who with of foes to side will deign

So listen all etc. 

And voices ignorantly rise,

In foolish Clamour to the skies;

Our arms decry in selfish wise.

Men, whose own ends before their eyes,

Are greater than the Empire’s ties

So Listen All etc.

For partisans of narrow mind,

No pledge within our state we’d find

To clip our wings, our Talons grind,

To suit the measure of their kind.

So listen all etc.

But Britain’s sons her name uphold,

In spite of Black sheep in the fold,

With Statesman wise, and sailors bold,

The Empire in one cause enrolled,

We’ll win our way through as of old,

And listen all etc.

With army strong to keep our doors,

And Navy free to guard our shores.

Our Commerce and our Empire’s stores;

As strong men armed invite no wars,

We’ll keep the peace that strength secures.

And listen all etc.

then give us strength to guard aright.

Lord of all Nations! In thy sight

Thy charge o’er peoples, black and white,

That England’s rule, and England’s might

Reflect on earth thy Heav’nly light,

And grant that all

When comes the call.

May do their duty, great or small.

 

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