The Breitmann Ballads

Breitmann in Maryland

Charles G. Leland

DER BREITMANN mit his gompany
Rode out in Marylandt.
“Dere’s nix to trink in dis countrie;
ine droat’s as dry as sand.
It’s light canteen und haversack,
It’s hoonger mixed mit doorst;
Und if ve had some lager beer
I’d trink oontil I boorst.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Ve’d trink oontil ve boorst.

Herr Leut’nant, take a dozen men,
Und ride dis land around!
Herr Feldwebel, go foragin’
Dill somedings goot is found.
Gotts-donder! men, go ploonder!
Ve hafn’t trinked a bit
Dis fourdeen hours! If I had beer
I’d sauf oontil I shplit!
Gling, glang, gloria!
Ve’d sauf oontil ve shplit!”

At mitternacht a horse’s hoofs
Coom rattlin’ droo de camp;
“Rouse dere!—coom rouse der house dere!
Herr Copitain—ve moost tromp!
De scouds have found a repel town,
Mit repel davern near,
A repel keller in de cround,
Mit repel lager beer!!
Gling, glang, gloria!
All fool of lager beer!”

How Breitmann broked de bush!
“O let me see dat lager beer!
O let me at him rush!
Und is mein sabre sharp und true,
Und is mein var-horse goot?
To get one quart of lager beer
I’d shpill a sea of ploot.
Gling, glang, gloria!
I’d shpill a sea of ploot.

“Fuenf hoonderd repels hold de down,
One hoonderd strong are ve;
Who gares a tam for all de odds
Vhen men so dirsty pe.”
And in dey smashed and down dey crashed,
Like donder-polts dey fly,
Rash fort as der vild yäger cooms
Mit blitzen droo de shky.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Like blitzen droo de shky.

How flewed to rite, how flewed to left
De moundains, drees, und hedge;
How left und rite de yäger corps
Vent donderin’ droo de pridge.
Und splash und splosh dey ford de shtream
Vhere not some pridges pe:
All dripplin’ in de moondlight peam
Stracks vent de Cavallrie.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Der Breitmann’s cavallrie.

Und hoory, hoory, on dey rote,
Oonheedin’ vet or try;
Und horse und rider shnort and blowed
Und shparklin’ bepples fly.
Ropp! Ropp! I shmell de parley-prew!
Dere’s somedings goot ish near.
Ropp! Ropp!—I scent de kneiperei;
Ve’ve got to lager beer!
Gling, glang, gloria!
Ve’ve got to lager beer!

Hei! how de carpine pullets klinged
Oopon de helmets hart!
Oh, Breitmann—how dy sabre ringed;
Du alter Knasterbart!
De contrapands dey sing for shoy
To see de rebs go down,
Und hear der Breitmann grimly gry:
Hoorah!—ve’ve dook de down.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Victoria, victoria!
De Dootch have dook de down.

Mid shout and crash and sabre flash,
And vild husaren shout
De Dootchmen boorst de keller in,
Und rolled de lager out;
Und in de coorlin’ powder shmoke,
Vhile shtill de pullets sung,
Dere shtood der Breitmann, axe in hand,
A knockin’ out de boong.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Victoria! Encoria!
De shpicket beats de boong.

Gotts! vot a shpree der Breitmann had
Vhile yet his hand was red,
A trinkin’ lager from his poots
Among de repel tead.
“’Tvas dus dey vent at mitternight
Along der moundain side;
’Tvas dus dey help make history!
Dis vas der Breitmann’s ride.
Gling, glang, gloria!
Victoria! Victoria!
Cer’visia, encoria!
De treadful mitnight ride
Of Breitmann’s vild Freischarlinger,
All famous, broad, und vide.

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