28-08-07

Flower of Scotland

Flower of Scotland (Flùir na h-Alba in Gaelic) is an unofficial national anthem of Scotland, a role for which it competes against the older Scotland the Brave. In common with England among the Home Nations, Scotland has no official national anthem. Flower of Scotland was written by Roy Williamson of the folk group The Corries and presented in 1967[1]. The song refers to the victory of the Scots, led by King Robert the Bruce over the English King Edward II, at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314.

The song is a particular favourite of Scottish national rugby union team fans, who first adopted it for the Lions tour of South Africa in 1974. The last two lines of each verse are generally sung with particular ferocity, especially before games against England. The Scottish Football Association adopted Flower of Scotland as its official pre-game anthem in 1997 although it was first used by them in 1993, following the Scottish Rugby Union's example. Usually only the first and third verses are sung.

The introduction of Flower of Scotland was partly due to hostility amongst rugby and football fans toward the British national anthem God Save the Queen being used to represent Scotland, there being no other suitable anthem at the time. The song was popular amongst rugby supporters and was finally brought in as an unofficial anthem in response to God Save the Queen being continually drowned out by the ferocious booing and whistling of some of the Scotland supporters.

A public petition was presented to the Scottish Parliament in 2004 calling for another song to be selected instead. [2]. Donnie Munro, the former lead singer of Scottish rock band Runrig, has refused to sing the third verse when leading the audience on a rendition of Flower of Scotland, due to his British unionist views.[3] This led to the third verse being dropped in favour of the second verse. Controversial at the time, it was reinstated later when Ronnie Browne of The Corries led the audience, as he had done many times prior to that.

A more practical snag is that Flower of Scotland is difficult to play on the bagpipes. The third last note is a flattened seventh, which is not considered to be part of the standard pipe scale. In order to hit the correct note, a 'forked fingering' must be used which less experienced players are unlikely to be familiar with. The tune was originally composed on the Northumbrian smallpipes, which play in F and have the benefit of keys on the chanter to achieve a greater range of notes.

O Flower of Scotland,
When will we see
Your like again,
That fought and died for,
Your wee bit Hill and Glen,
And stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
Tae think again.

The Hills are bare now,
And Autumn leaves
lie thick and still,
O'er land that is lost now,
Which those so dearly held,
That stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
Tae think again.

Those days are past now,
And in the past
they must remain,
But we can still rise now,
And be the nation again,
That stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
Tae think again.

O Flower of Scotland,
When will we see
your like again,
That fought and died for,
Your wee bit Hill and Glen,
And stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
Tae think again.

23:27 Gepost door Johan R. Ryheul in Algemeen | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

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