“The Battle of Boulogne”


"On the second of August, eighteen hundred and one, We sailed with Lord Nelson to the port of Boulogne." The forces attack a strongly entrenched position, and suffer heavy casualties. Nelson and crews work for better times for the wounded


For a conflict involving Lord Nelson (1758-1805), most histories have little to say about the Battle of Boulogne -- many histories of the Napoleonic Wars don't mention it at all. Nelson, always aggressive, attempted an attack on the French fortifications, and was bloodily repulsed, much as described in the song.

This song is known primarily from broadsides, but Greig at least had a traditional version. - RBW

Historical references

  • Aug 2, 1801 - Battle of Boulogne


  1. Stokoe/Reay, pp. 178-179, "The Battle of Boulogne" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. ST StoR178 (Partial)
  3. Roud #3175
  4. BI, StoR178


Alternate titles: “The Second of August”
Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1900 (Stokoe/Reay)
Keywords: sea sailor battle death ship
Found in: Britain(England(North))