Mark Twain’s, Battle Hymn of the Republic


Mark Twain


Mine eyes have seen the orgy of the Launching of the Sword;

He is searching out the hoardings where the stranger’s wealth is stored;

He hath loosed his fateful lightnings, and with woe and death has scored

His lust is marching on.


 I have seen him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps;

They have builded him a altar in the Eastern dews and damps;

I have read his doomful mission by the dim and flaring lamps –

His night is marching on.


I have read his bandit gospel writ in burnished rows of steel:

“As ye deal with my pretentions, so with you my wrath shall deal;

Let the faithless son of Freedom crush the patriot with his heel;

Lo, Greed is marching on!”


We have legalized the strumpet and are guarding her retreat;

Greed is seeking out commercial souls before his judgement seat;

O, be swift, ye clods, to answer him! Be jubilant my feet!

Our god is marching on.


In a sordid slime harmonious Greed was born in yonder ditch,

With a longing in his bosom – and for others’ goods an itch.

As Christ died to make men holy, let men die to make us rich –

Our god is marching on.


Samuel Langhorne Clemens, Mark Twain, though born in Florida, Missouri, was very proud that both his parents were descendants of Virginians.