CLARE'S DRAGOONS

Thomas Osbourne Davis

The Irish Brigades ---including Clare's Dragoons--- were the most famed and formidable soldiers of all Europe. To quote George II : "Cursed be the laws which deprive me of such subjects!"

When on Ramilles’ bloody field
The baffled French were forced to yield,
The victor Saxon backward reeled
Before the charge of Clare’s Dragoons.
The flags we conquered in that fray
Look lone in Ypres choir they say,
We’ll win them company today,
Or bravely die like Clare’s Dragoons.

Viva la, for Ireland’s wrong!
Viva la, for Ireland’s right!
Viva la, in battle throng,
For a Spanish steed and a sabre bright!

The brave old lord died near the fight,
But for each drop he lost that night
A Saxon cavalier shall bite
The dust, before Lord Clare’s Dragoons.
For never, when our spurs were set,
And never, when our sabres met,
Could we the Saxon soldiers get
To stand the shock of Clare’s dragoons.

Viva la, the New Brigade!
Viva la, the old one too!
Viva la, the Rose shall fade
And the Shamrock shine for ever new!

O comrades! Think how Ireland pines,
Her exiled lords, her rifled shrines,
Her dearest hope the ordered lines
And bursting charge of Clare’s Dragoons.
Then fling the Green Flag to the sky,
And ‘Limerick!’ be your battle cry,
And charge til blood flows fetlock-high
Around the track of Clare’s Dragoons!


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