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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

The Fate of John Burgoyne

By Revolutionary Songs and Ballads

[Preserved in Griswold’s “Curiosities of American Literature.” 1843.]

WHEN Jack the king’s commander

Was going to his duty,

Through all the crowd he smiled and bowed

To every blooming beauty.

The city rung with feats he’d done

In Portugal and Flanders,

And all the town thought he’d be crowned

The first of Alexanders.

To Hampton Court he first repairs

To kiss great George’s hand, sirs;

Then to harangue on state affairs

Before he left the land, sirs.

The “Lower House” sat mute as mouse

To hear his grand oration;

And “all the peers,” with loudest cheers,

Proclaimed him to the nation.

Then off he went to Canada,

Next to Ticonderoga,

And quitting those away he goes

Straightway to Saratoga.

With great parade his march he made

To gain his wished-for station,

While far and wide his minions hied

To spread his “Proclamation.”

To such as stayed he offers made

Of “pardon on submission;

But savage bands should waste the lands

Of all in opposition.”

But ah, the cruel fates of war!

This boasted son of Britain,

When mounting his triumphal car,

With sudden fear was smitten.

The sons of Freedom gathered round,

His hostile bands confounded,

And when they’d fain have turned their back

They found themselves surrounded!

In vain they fought, in vain they fled;

Their chief, humane and tender,

To save the rest soon thought it best

His forces to surrender.

Brave St. Clair, when he first retired,

Knew what the fates portended;

And Arnold and heroic Gates

His conduct have defended.

Thus may America’s brave sons

With honor be rewarded,

And be the fate of all her foes

The same as here recorded.