Sailor's Alphabet, The

DESCRIPTION: Capstan/pumping shanty; sailors remember the alphabet and tell of their, "merry" lives: "A is the anchor that hangs o'er the bow/And B is the bowsprit that bends like a bow.... So merry, so merry, so merry are we/No mortals on earth like a sailor at sea"
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1932 (Creighton-NovaScotia)
KEYWORDS: sea ship work nonballad worksong sailor worker wordplay | alphabet
FOUND IN: Britain(England(West)) US(MA,MW,NE,SE) Canada(Mar,Newf)
REFERENCES (15 citations):
Gundry-CanowKernow-SongsDancesFromCornwall, p. 52, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Walton/Grimm-Windjammers-SongsOfTheGreatLakesSailors, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (2 texts, 1 tune)
Thompson-BodyBootsAndBritches-NewYorkStateFolktales, pp. 194-195, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, incompletely remembered)
Eckstorm/Smyth-MinstrelsyOfMaine, pp. 233-234, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, without a chorus)
Lane/Gosbee-SongsOfShipsAndSailors, p. 75, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore3 229, "Alphabet of the Ship" (1 text)
Brown/Schinhan-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore5 229, "Alphabet of the Ship" (1 tune plus a text excerpt)
Morris-FolksongsOfFlorida, #25, "The Seaman's Alphabet" (1 text)
Peacock, pp. 885-886, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Creighton-SongsAndBalladsFromNovaScotia 98, "Alphabet Song" (2 texts, 1 tune; the "C" text is "The Logger's Alphabet")
Pottie/Ellis-FolksongsOfTheMaritimes, p.p. 88-89, "Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Harlow-ChantyingAboardAmericanShips, pp. 52-54, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hugill-ShantiesFromTheSevenSeas, pp. 456-458, "The Bosun's Alphabet," "Old English Chantey" (2 texts, 2 tunes) [AbEd, pp. 341-342]
Palmer-OxfordBookOfSeaSongs 107, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)
Kinsey-SongsOfTheSea, pp. 125-126, "The Bosun's Alphabet" (1 text, 1 tune)

Roud #21100
Clifford Jenkins et al, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (on LastDays)
Sam Larner, "Alphabet Song" (on SLarner01); "The Sailor's Alphabet" (on Voice12)
Martin Reddigan, "Sailor's Alphabet" (on MUNFLA/Leach)
Capt. Leighton Robinson, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (on AFS, 1951; on LC26)
Leighton Robinson w. Alex Barr, Arthur Brodeur & Leighton McKenzie, "Sailor's Alphabet" (on AFS 4230 B, 1939; in AMMEM/Cowell)
Mrs. Gladys Snow, "The Sailor's Alphabet" (on PeacockCDROM) [one verse only]

cf. "The Logger's Alphabet" (subject, form) and references there
cf. "The Bargeman's Alphabet" (subject, form)
NOTES [22 words]: We've cross-referenced this enough that it deserves its own entry, although it's identical in form to "The Logger's Alphabet." - PJS
Last updated in version 6.4
File: RcTSAlp

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