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Song of the Moor 1

Song of the Moor 1

Just before his death, the author William Crossing compiled a book of Dartmoor poems and amongst these was ‘The Song of the Dartmoor Men’.

Vur good red gold, King John, we’m told,

Sot all broad Devon free

Vrom the forest laws, ‘cept Dartymoor,

But made it plain to see,

That the commoner’s rights should be preserved,

Whatever should betide

An’ us declare t’was nort but vair

That he should laive mun bide.

Us be forestmen and commoners,

And proud of our rights us be.

Rushes vur datchin’, turve to burn,

An’ stone vur walls zo strong,

Plenty o’ kaip vur bullocks and shaip

To the Dartmoor man belong.

An us’ll maintain our ancient rights;

Ole customs shan’t be broke,

An us wan’t tich, vur there is’n zich,

No venison nor green oak.

Us be forestmen and commoners,

And proud of our rights us be.

Song of the Moor 1

Us hev draived the forest and commons too,

Aye, draived mun vitty vair –

When the Raive hev zummoned us to the tars

He’ve always found us there.

Us know our work and do it too,

Aich one his share do take

An’ draive the strays to Dunnabridge Pound

Vur nort but a hap’ny cake.

Us be forestmen and commoners,

And proud of our rights us be.

Song of the Moor 1

Us hev bait the bounds and all that there,

An took a proper pride

In seeing that us bait mun vair,

An’ most times plaized aich zide,

Nor fear, nor favour, hinder us,

To all us give thur due,

An do our suit at the Dichy Court

Like honest men and true.

Us be forestmen and commoners,

And proud of our rights us be.

So now fill up aich wan his cup,

Aye, fill mun to the brim,

Be dapper and spry, and then’ll try

To give ‘e a toast I zim:

May us to friend and stranger too

E’er show the aupen door,

And give to all a welcome true

To good old Dartymoor.

Us be forestmen and commoners,

And proud of our rights us be.

 

About Tim Sandles

Tim Sandles is the founder of Legendary Dartmoor

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