Hamborger Veermaster

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´De Hamborger Veermaster´ (Standard German: ´Der Hamburger Viermaster´, English: Hamburg's four-master) is a famous sea shanty sung in Low German, presumably first published between 1850 and 1890. It is partly in English (an adaptation of the shanty "The Banks of the Sacramento") and partly in Low German. It was – and is still sometimes, in particular in Northern Germany –, the historical geographical distribution of Low German, sung as a work song.[citation needed]

Some claim that the "four-master" was the Hamburg America Line sailing ship Deutschland (build in 1847) which at that time was used in transatlantic emigrant transport,[citation needed] but it is unclear whether any specific vessel is in fact referred to. Another source says that the text would refer to the Liverpool steamer Crimean (build in 1865) who had been bought and converted in a sailing ship by the Hamburg shipping company Sloman after 1885. [1] In any case, this is in marked contrast to "The Banks of the Sacramento", which follows a similar pattern but deals with a fast and seaworthy ship travelling the Clipper route and taking "never more than seventy days" "[f]rom Limehouse Docks to Sydney Heads"[1].

Lyrics[edit]

German lyrics Literal English translation
Verse 1

Ick heff mol een Hamborger Veermaster sehn,
|:To my hooday!:|
De Masten so scheef as den Schipper sien Been,
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

I once saw a beer-master from Hamburg.
|:To my hooday!:|
Her masts were as crooked as the skipper's legs.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

Refrain

|: Blow, boys, blow, for Californio,
There's plenty of gold, so I am told,
On the banks of Sacramento.:|

|: Blow, boys, blow, for Californio,
There's plenty of gold, so I am told,
On the banks of Sacramento.:|

Verse 2

Dat Deck weer vull Isen, vull Dreck un vull Smeer.
|:To my hooday!:|
„Rein Schipp“ weer den Oll'n sin scheunstes Pläseer.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

The deck was full of iron, dirt and grease.
|:To my hooday!:|
´Clean the ship´ was the captain's most beautiful joy.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

Verse 3

De Kombüs weer vull Lüüs, de Kajüt weer vull Schiet,

|:To my hooday!:|

De Beschüten, de leupen von sülvens all wiet.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

The galley was full of lice, the cabin was full of shit.
|:To my hooday!:|
The biscuits walked away all by themselves.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

Verse 4

Dat Soltfleesch weer greun, un de Speck wör vull Modn.
|:To my hooday!:|
Un Köm geef dat blots an Wiehnachtsobend.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

The salted meat was green, the bacon was full of maggots
|:To my hooday!:|
Snaps was only there at Christmas Eve.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

Verse 5

Un wulln wi mol seiln, ick sech ji dat nur,
|:To my hooday!:|
Denn lööp he dree vorut un veer wedder retur.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

And if we wanted to sail, I merely say,
|:To my hooday!:|
She moved three footages ahead and four back again.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

Verse 6

Un as dat Schipp, so weer ok de Kaptein,
|:To my hooday!:|
De Lüüd för dat Schipp, de weern ok blots schangheit.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

And like the ship, so the captain was,
|:To my hooday!:|
The men for the ship were all shanghaied.
To my hoo day, hoo day, ho - ho - ho - ho!

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ De Hamburger Veermaster

External links[edit]