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Drake's Trumpet

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900305.  Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:10 pm Reply with quote

Drake’s Drum is a snare drum that Sir Francis Drake took with him when he circumnavigated the world. Shortly before he died he ordered the drum to be taken to Buckland Abbey, where it still is today, and vowed that if England was ever in danger someone was to beat the drum and he would return to defend the country. According to legend it can be heard to beat at times when England is at war or significant national events take place.

The following legend was told me by a Dunkirk and Normandy veteran, in about 1954. Like all good legends, it ain't true, but contains a truth.
"This Yank was boasting to us about how the good old US of A was best at everything, and had the biggest of everything. 'Why,' sez he, 'we got this big gun, and when it fires, the sound takes three hours to travel clear across the States to the Pacific Ocean.'
"So I sez to him, quiet like, 'We've got a trumpet, left to us by Sir Francis Drake, to be sounded at time of war. We blew it in 1914, and we blew it again in 1939; and, d'you know, each time it took three years for the sound to cross the Atlantic Ocean.'"


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