The Deserter

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Lyrics

As I was a-walking along Ratcliffe Highway A recruiting party came a-beating my way. They enlisted me and treated me till I did not know And to the Queen's barracks they forced me to go.

When first I deserted, I thought myself free Until my cruel comrade informed against me. I was quickly followed after and brought back with speed, I was handcuffed and guarded, heavy irons put on me.

Court martial, court martial, they held upon me

And the sentence passed upon me: three-hundred-and-three. May the Lord have mercy on them for their sad cruelty, For now the Queen's duty lies heavy on me.

When next I deserted, I thought myself free Until my cruel sweetheart informed against me. I was quickly followed after and brought back with speed I was handcuffed and guarded, heavy irons put on me.

Court martial, court martial then quickly was got And the sentence passed upon me: that I was to be shot. May the Lord have mercy on them for their sad cruelty, For now the Queen's duty lies heavy on me,

Then up rode Prince Albert in his carriage-and-six, Saying, “Where is that young man whose coffin it is fixed? Set him free from his irons and let him go free, For he'll make a good soldier for his Queen and country.”


Type:
Album
Artists:
Fairport Convention
Lyrics:
Music:
Released:
December 1969 (UK)
Recorded:
  • Sound Techniques, London
Length:
4:22
Label:
Island Records Ltd.
Producer:
Arranger:
  • Fairport Convention