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Is 'God Save The Queen' the British national anthem, or the English one?

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sp1814 | 09:44 Fri 27th Jul 2012 | News
38 Answers
Bit of a hoo-ha this morning because Ryan Giggs and Ifeoma Dieke refused to sing the national anthem.

I found this on an old report frm the BBC:

The little-known and even less-sung sixth verse of God Save the Queen implores God to come to the aid of Marshal George Wade, who was sent to quell rebellious Scottish highlanders in the wake of the Jacobite rising of 1715.

It says: "May he sedition hush, And like a torrent rush, Rebellious Scots to crush."

So was the national anthem originally that of England, which should be recognized by the whole country, or are the Scots and Welsh right to view it in the context within it was written?

(By the way - did anyone else know that there were so many verses???)


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Neither. The anthem only praises the monarchy and not the nation. No mention of England or Britain.
They can sing what they want but at all Scottish rugby matches etc. Flower of Scotland is sung as the Scottish National Anthem. I would not sing God Save the Queen as it was originally "anti" Scottish.
full text here


This says it's the de facto British national anthem

In other words, there isn't an official one. So Scots can sing Flower of Scotland if they want.
I quite like some of the royal family - the sharp republican edges I once had have been worn down over time to the degree that I quite like having a royal family now. But only the main characters: not oxygen thieves like Edward.

That said, I agree with Kiki - our national anthem should be about the nation. It should not be about an individual. I'm more surprised that some players bother to sing it than I am that some don't. It just seems a bit odd to sing a song about an individual, which is not at all representative of our nation.
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How many verses are normally sung at national sporting events?

Most people I know can get about halfway through the second verse before drying up.
I really don't like our anthem. IMO we should have something like "Land of Hope & Glory".
Can't we change it for 'Chariots of Fire'?
Question. What song do do England, Wales and Scotland ,respectively, sing before playing soccer matches?
As the Queen said recently, there are some things that we, as a nation, might have done differently or not at all, so whatever misdeeds were in mind all those years ago no longer apply, and we regret them. Goodness me. Are you going to bring up the slave trade next? Time has moved on. Surely the National Anthem recognises that we're a monarchy, and long may that be. I can't think of any other music that would stir us to the same extent when we see the Union Jack hoisted for our Olympic medal winners, and make us proud to be British. If Giggs and Co. want to play politics, shame on them.
I take your point, Tommo, but the fact remains that it's a hymn to the monarchy and not the nation. It's also a god-awful dirge of a tune, which just happens to be the same as the American 'My Country Tis of Thee'. Like Tizzi, I think 'Land of Hope & Glory' would be better, or perhaps 'Rule Britannia'.
how about this one?
LOL, I guess that sums up the British, piggy. And we all like vindaloo
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My condolences to all of you who are content to be subjects and be ruled over
and to sing proudly about your condition..
the tune is woeful, and yes it is anti scottish ! billy connolly suggested some time ago, keep the words, but change the tune to the archers melody, all very jolly :)
Where exactly is it "anti Scottish"?
sp1814, it is customary for Twickenham crowds to get through one line of Swing Low Sweet Chariot before hitting the wall. They appear to have sung it first in honour of a black England player, Chris Oti, scoring three tries against Ireland on his debut. He played only 12 more matches, but the one-line song lingers on.

Al Murray explains how the national anthem works:

Chuck, the song appears to have become popular when it was sung in honour of George II after the British army had been beaten by the Young Pretender's army at Prestonpans. There's some suggestion that the Stuart supporters sang it too, in honour of their own man, though presumably not the last verse about crushing rebellious Scots.
IMHO we/they should have GSTQ only when she is there, or at the end of an important occasion and 'land of hope and glory' for the anthem!

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