“The Whaleman's Lament”


"'Twas on the briny ocean On a whaleship I did go; Oft times I thought of distant friends...." The singer relates the voyage around Cape Horn and describes how Captain and officers abuse the crew. He vows to go sailing no more.


Huntington does not indicate what tune he used for this song; perhaps he made it up. (He can hardly have used a tune from other versions of this song, since he doesn't list any.) The metrical form, however, strongly suggests "Jim Jones at Botany Bay." - RBW


  1. Huntington-Whalemen, pp. 15-17, "The Whaleman's Lament" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Roud #2000
  3. BI, SWMS015


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1856 (Journal from the Catalpa)
Keywords: whaler hardtimes abuse