I will not bore you with a factual account [ see http://www.battle1066.com/] for that. However here is a poem by Marriot Edgar on the subject. It is better when listening to a version by Stanley Holloway on utube , which was easy to post on windows but here .. I gave up 10 minutes ago !

“I’ll tell of the Battle of Hastings,
As happened in days long gone by,
When Duke William became King of England,
And ‘arold got shot in the eye.

It were like this: one day in October,
The Duke, who were always a toff,
Had no battles on at the moment,
So he’d given his lads the day off.

They’d got out their boats to go fishing,
When one said in’t Conqueror’s ear,
‘Let’s go and put wind up’t Saxons’
Bill said, ‘By gum that’s an idea.’

Then turning around to his cohorts,
He lifted his big Norman voice,
Shouting, ‘Hands up who’s coming to England.’
They knew they had no choice.

They set off around about tea-time,
The sea was very calm and still,
And at quarter to ten the next morning,
They arrived at a place called Bexhill.

King Harold rode up as they landed,
His face full of venom and ‘ate,
He said, ‘If you’ve come for t’regatta,
You’ve got here six weeks too late.

At this William rose, cool but ‘aughty,
And said, ‘Now give us none of yer cheek,
You’d best have your throne re-upholstered
‘cos I’ll want to use it next week.’

When ‘arold ‘eard this ‘ere defiance,
With rage he turned purple and blue,
He shouted some rude words in Saxon,
To which William replied, ‘and you too.’

‘Twere a beautiful day for a battle,
The Normans set off with a will
And when both sides were assembled,
They tossed for the top of the ‘ill.

King ‘arold won the advantage,
On the ‘ill top he took up ‘is stand,
With his knaves and his cads all around ‘im,
On ‘is ‘orse with ‘is ‘awk on ‘is ‘and.

The Normans ‘ad nowt in their favour,
Their chance of victory seemed small,
For the slope of the field was agen ‘em,
And the wind in their faces an’ all.

The kick-off was sharp at two thirty,
And soon as the whistle ‘ad went,
Both sides started slamming each other,
Till the swineherds could hear ‘em in Kent.

The Saxons ‘ad best line o’ forwards,
Well armed with both buckler and sword,
But the Normans ‘ad best combination,
So at half time – neither had scored.

The Duke called his cohorts together,
And said, ‘Let’s pretend that we’re beat,
Let’s get Saxons down on’t level,
Then cut off their means of retreat.

So they ran, and the Saxons ran after,
Just exactly as William had planned,
Leaving ‘arold alone on the ‘ill top,
On ‘is ‘orse with ‘is ‘awk on ‘is ‘and.

When the Conqueror saw what had happened,
A bow and an arrow he drew,
He went straight up to ‘arold and shot ‘im,
He were off-side, but what could they do?

The Normans turned round in a fury,
And gave back both parry and thrust,
Till the battle were all o’er bar t’shouting,
And you couldn’t see Saxons for dust.

Then after the battle were over,
They found ‘arold so stately and grand,
Sitting there with his eye full of arrow,
On ‘is ‘orse,with ‘is ‘awk,on ‘is ‘and. “

[C] Marriott Edgar



5 thoughts on “OCTOBER MONTH OF BATTLES.2.

  1. As a child I used to love this. However in more recent years I have noticed that the guy on is ‘orse with the arrow etc is not actually the guy with royal garb – he’s a little further back being hacked down with a sword…?

  2. Good morning Laird,
    I am just letting you know that I received an sms from Kenny to say they have found him a new liver, that he is being operated on today 15 October 2010.
    Kind thoughts

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