Carterhaugh Ba'


James Hogg / Music Scocha / Arr. Scocha


On the 4th December 1815 the Carterhaugh Ba'game took place between the Souters 0' Serkirk, led by Sir Walter Scott, and the Shepherds of Yarrow, led by the Ear/of Home and the Ettrick Shepherd. Hawick poet James Hogg (author of 'Tehbus') along with 100 other Hawick men marched off to Selkirk to assist their  

Souter 'freends', led triumphantly by the Drums and Fifes, Hogg was inspired to pen this rousing song.  

One of the few surviving works byHogg. It gives us great pride to be able to rekindle his memory with our tune.


Carterhaugh Ba'


Of twa poets selected for Selkirk's Olympics 

Wattie 0' Waterloo; Jem 0' the Crook.  

Fine sangs were expected, but 0' they were scrimpitl

A' time that was spent was in praise 0' the Duke.


Lord Hume. he has summoned Tweed. Ettrick and Yarrow 

Tweed, Ettrick and Yarrow obeyed his call 

In hope to reverse the proud boast of our burgh 

Won by our old dads at the game of football.  

With heart and with hand we accepted the challenge

Our allies they pledged their faith they would come

The morn of decision beheld our young callants  

A' rallied out by the fife and the drum.


We stuck in the fir twig, the plant of all weather  

Away we did march with our hearts light and fain

We met our opponents (their badge was the heather)

Assembled in thousands on Carterhaugh plain.


The combat then started with the courage of lions 

Distinction was banished from part and from place  

The clown tripped the heels from the man of proud science 

And cobblers ran foul on my Lord and his Grace. 

With heart and with hand, we through manly exertion

Ere Sol reached his zenith had won the first hail  

But lo.' 'mong our allies a general desertion 

E'en flowers of the forest on us turned tail.



Away we did march with our hearts light and fain 

Assembled in thousands, on Carterhaugh plain


The dastards of Melrose and Galashiels weavers 

0' spurn them, ye brave, from the lists of proud fame

They pulled out our badge and became our deceivers

They stuck in the heather and played a foul game.  

Supported alone by the Hawick independents  

Unrivalled and brave at fight or at fun  

Lord Hume nor Buccleuch with their cringing attendants

Shall blight the fair laurels our forefathers won.




Ye shades of our fathers who's ashes now slumber 

If ever allowed to revisit the day 

You'd see us victorious against double numbers 

You'd see us triumphant o'er fraud and foul play.  

So long as the fir twig, the plant of all weather 

Waves o'er the low heather so transient in bloom 

The lads of our burgh with hearts good and thorough

Shall baffle the clans 0' the haughty Lord Hume.  

Then up wi the banner to Selkirk men's honour 

That sounded o'er Britain eight ages and more 

The lads of our burgh with hearts'good and thorough

Will play the same game as their Daddies of yore.