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View Full Version : "Row" in "The British Grenadiers"



tashirosgt
2010-Feb-27, 01:26 AM
The Wikipedia article on the song "The British Grenadiers" explains that the line:
"With a tow, row, row, row, row, row, to the British Grenadiers"
refers to forming rows with toes on a line.

However, when I listen to various versions of this song on YouTube, the word "row" is pronounced to rhyme with the word "how", not with the word "slow". Which is the historically correct way to pronounce the word. If it is pronounced to rhyme with "how", does it actually refer to a row in a military formation ?

captain swoop
2010-Feb-27, 12:53 PM
Well, it's probably pronounced to fit the rhyme with the song.
I always thought it was a 'Cheer' rather than reffering to lines.

swampyankee
2010-Feb-27, 02:18 PM
In the version of English I speak (the Hartford, Connecticut version of US English), "row" will rhyme with "toe" when referring to putting things in nice, neat lines and with "cow" when referring to low-level, possibly mildly violent, spats.

Other English-language dialects will vary.