Private Tommy Atkins

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Private Tommy Atkins
by Henry Hamilton

O, we take him from the city or the plough,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
And we drill him, and we dress him up so neat,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
We teach him to uphold his manly brow,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
And how to walk, and where to put his feet.
Ta-ran-ta-ran-ta-ra
It doesn't matter who he was before,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
Or what his parents favor'd for his name;
Ta-ran-ta-ra
Once he's pocketed the shilling,
And a uniform he's filling,
We'll call him Tommy Atkins, all the same.
O!
Tommy, Tommy Atkins,
You're a "good un," heart and hand;
You're a credit to your calling,
And to all your native land;
May your luck be never failing,
May your love be ever true!
God bless you, Tommy Atkins,
Here's your Country's love to you!

In time of peace he hears the bugle call
Ta-ran-ta-ra
And in Barracks, from "Revally" to "Lights Out!"
Ta-ran-ta-ra
If "Sentry go" and "Pipeclay" ever pall,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
There's always plenty more of work about.
Ta-ran-ta-ran-ta-ra
As happy as a school boy, and as gay;
Then back he goes to duty,
All for Country, Home and Beauty
And the noble sum of half a crown a day.
O!
Tommy, Tommy Atkins,
You're a good un, heart and hand;
You're a credit to your calling,
And to all your native land;
May your luck be never failing,
May your love be ever true!
God bless you, Tommy Atkins,
Here's your Country's love to you!

In wartime then, it's "Tommy to the Front!"
Ta-ran-ta-ra
And we ship him off, in "Troopers" to the fray,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
We sit at home while Tommy bears the brunt,
Ta-ran-ta-ra
A fighting for his country - and his pay.
Ta-ran-ta-ran-ta-ra
And weather he's on India's coral strand,
Or pouring out his blood in the Soudan,
To keep our flag a-flying,
He's a doing, and a dying,
Ev'ry inch of him a soldier and a man.
O!
Tommy, Tommy Atkins,
You're a "good un," heart and hand;
You're a credit to your calling,
And to all your native land;
May your luck be never failing,
May your love be ever true!
God bless you, Tommy Atkins,
Here's your Country's love to you!