Australian Folk Songs

songs | books | records | articles | glossary | links | search | responses | home

The People's Anthem (1892)

When wilt Thou save the people--
Oh God of Mercy, when ?
Not kings and lords, but nations ;
Not thrones and crowns but men !
Flowers of Thy heart, Oh God, are they ;
Let them not pass, like weeds, away,
Their heritage a sunless day.
God save the People !

Shall crime bring crime forever,
Strength aiding still the strong ?
Is it Thy will, oh Father,
That man shall toil for wrong ?
"No !" say Thy mountains, "No !" Thy skies ;
"Man's clouded sun shall brightly rise,
And songs be heard instead of sighs.
God save fhe People !

When wilt Thou save the People,
Oh, God of Mercy, when ?
The People, Lord ! the People,
Not thrones and crowns but men.
God save the People ! Thine, they are,
Thy children as Thy angels fair ;
Save them from bondage and despair.
God save the People !



From the Queensland Newspaper the Worker June 1892 p. 3.

Ebenezer Elliott was one of the leaders of the Chartist movement in England, 1781-1849; he was widely known as the 'Poet of the People,' and by his enemies as the 'Corn law Rhymer'

His collection 'The Splendid Village: Corn Law Rhymes; And Other Poems' was forst published in 1833.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory