Scots Sangs Fur Schools

Traditional and new Scots songs for use in Scottish schools

The Hard Heads

Starka Varna
This 'Viking' song in the old Norn language of Shetland was found there in 1948, and is still sung in Iceland.

The Norn words [see 'Starka Varna' on the left] tell of how to sail a boat.

Ewan McVicar's new words here tell of the Vikings. He sings them with the Chorus Quartet from Perm, Russia.

Hear the song here

The hard heads are on the sea
Pull your oar, pull your oar
Starka varna vesta lee
Pull your oar bravely

We come to gather, not to fight
But if we fight we will be right

Back at home our children cry
We must feed them or they'll die

The ice comes to kill our fields
So we must come to take your yield

If you will not fight with us
Where is your honour? in the dust