written and published in 1794 by Robert Burns
, mimicking the words of Robert the Bruce
to his troops before the battle of Bannockburn
Scots, wha hae wi' Wallace bled,
Scots, wham Bruce has aften led,
Welcome to your gory bed
Or to Victorie!
Now's the day, and now's the hour:
See the front o' battle lour,
See approach proud Edward's power-
Chains and slaverie!
Wha will be a traitor knave?
Wha can fill a coward's grave?
Wha sae base as be a slave?-
Let him turn, and flee!
Wha for Scotland's King and law
Freedom's sword will strongly draw,
Freeman stand or freeman fa',
Let him follow me!
By Oppression's woes and pains,
By your sons in servile chains,
We will drain our dearest veins
But they shall be free!
Lay the proud usurpers low!
Tyrants fall in every foe!
Liberty's in every blow!
Let us do, or die!
Little heavy on the rhetoric and punctuation, dontcha think? The metre is intentionally primitive, though the dialect is mostly standard English. The Edward mentioned is not the Edward Longshanks of Falkirk and Wallace fame, but his son. Nice piece all around, and classic Burns.