Oh hark! the drums do beatmy loveno longer can we stay.
The bugle-horns are sounding clearand we must march away.
We’re ordered down to portsmouthand it’s many is the weary mile.
To join the british army on the banks of the nile.

Oh williedearest williedon’t leave me here to mourn
Don’t make me curse and rue the day that ever I was born.
For the parting of our love would be like parting with my life.
So stay at homemy dearest loveand I will be your wife.

Oh my nancydearest nancysure that will never do.
The government has orderedand we are bound to go.
The government has orderedand the queen she gives command.
And I am bound on oathmy loveto serve in a foreign land.

Ohbut I’ll cut off my yellow hairand I’ll go along with you.
I’ll dress myself in uniformand I’ll see egypt too.
I’ll march beneath your banner while fortune it do smile
And we’ll comfort one another on the banks of the nile.

But your waist it is too slenderand your fingers they are too small.
In the sultry suns of egypt your rosy cheeks would spoil.
Where the cannons they do rattlewhen the bullets they do fly
And the silver trumpets sound so loud to hide the dismal cries.

Ohcursed be those cruel warsthat ever they began
For they have robbed our country of manys the handsome men.
They’ve robbed us of our sweethearts while their bodies they feed the lions
On the dry and sandy deserts which are the banks of the nile.

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