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About this Poem 

From Ballads and Songs (London: Cassell and Company, 1896).

 

A Credo

  I.

  For the sole edification
  Of this decent congregation,
  Goodly people, by your grant
  I will sing a holy chant—
       I will sing a holy chant.
  If the ditty sound but oddly,
  'Twas a father, wise and godly,
       Sang it so long ago—
  Then sing as Martin Luther sang,
  As Doctor Martin Luther sang:
  "Who loves not wine, woman and song,
  He is a fool his whole life long!"

  II.

  He, by custom patriarchal,
  Loved to see the beaker sparkle;
  And he thought the wine improved,
  Tasted by the lips he loved—
       By the kindly lips he loved.
  Friends, I wish this custom pious
  Duly were observed by us,
       To combine love, song, wine,
  And sing as Martin Luther sang,
  As Doctor Martin Luther sang:
  "Who loves not wine, woman and song,
  He is a fool his whole life long!"

  III.

  Who refuses this our Credo,
  And who will not sing as we do,
  Were he holy as John Knox,
  I'd pronounce him heterodox!
       I'd pronounce him heterodox,
  And from out this congregation,
  With a solemn commination,
       Banish quick the heretic,
  Who will not sing as Luther sang,
  As Doctor Martin Luther sang:
  "Who loves not wine, woman and song,
  He is a fool his whole life long!"

This poem is in the public domain. 

This poem is in the public domain. 

William Makepeace Thackeray

William Makepeace Thackeray, born July 18, 1811, was an English writer best known for his novels, particularly The History of Henry Esmond, Esq. (The Mershon Company Publishers, 1852) and Vanity Fair (Bradbury and Evans, 1848). While in school, Thackeray began writing poems, which he published in a number of magazines, chiefly Fraser and Punch. He died on December 24, 1863.

by this poet

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     When fierce political debate
       Throughout the isle was storming,
     And Rads attacked the throne and state,
       And Tories the reforming,
     To calm the furious rage of each,
       And right the land demented,
     Heaven sent us Jolly Jack, to teach
      The way to be contented.

     Jack's
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  Special Jurymen of England! who admire your country's laws,
  And proclaim a British Jury worthy of the realm's applause;
  Gayly compliment each other at the issue of a cause
  Which was tried at Guildford 'sizes, this day week as ever was.

  Unto that august tribunal comes a gentleman in grief,
  (Special
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  In tattered old slippers that toast at the bars,
  And a ragged old jacket perfumed with cigars,
  Away from the world and its toils and its cares,
  I've a snug little kingdom up four pair of stairs.

  To mount to this realm is a toil, to be sure,
  But the fire there is bright and the air rather pure;
  And