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Waltzing Matilda

The version most familiar in America follows, but the more authentic Australian version appears below it, along with some explanation of the terms that may be unfamiliar to you.

Once a jolly swagman sat beside the billabong,
Under the shade of a coolibah tree,
And he sang as he sat and waited by the billabong
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me

Waltzing matilda, waltzing matilda
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me
And he sang as he sat and waited by the billabong
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me.

Down came a jumbuck to drink beside the billabong
Up jumped the swagman and seized him with glee
And he sang as he tucked jumbuck in his tuckerbag
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me

Waltzing matilda, waltzing matilda
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me
And he sang as he sat and waited by the billabong
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me.

Down came the stockman, riding on his thoroughbred,
Down came the troopers, one, two, three.
"Where's the jolly jumbuck you've got in your tuckerbag?
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me

Waltzing matilda, waltzing matilda
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me
And he sang as he sat and waited by the billabong
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me.

Up jumped the swagman and plunged into the billabong,
"You'll never catch me alive," cried he
And his ghost may be heard as you ride beside the billabong,
You'll come a waltzing matilda with me.


Authentic Australian Version

Credited to A.B. (Banjo) Paterson

Once a jolly swagman camped by a billabong, Under the shade of a coolibah tree, And he sang as he watched and waited 'til his billy boiled "Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me?"

Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me And he sang as he watched and waited 'til his billy boiled, "Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me?" 

Along came a jumbuck to drink at the billabong, Up jumped the swagman and grabbed him with glee, And he sang as he stowed that jumbuck in his tucker bag, "You'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me." 
Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me. 
And he sang as he stowed that jumbuck in his tucker bag, "You'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me?" 

Up rode the squatter, mounted on his thoroughbred, Down came the troopers, one, two, three, "Whose is that jumbuck you've got in your tucker bag?" "You'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me." Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me? "Whose is that jumbuck you've got in your tucker bag?" "You'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me?" 
 

Up jumped the swagman, leapt into the billabong, "You'll never catch me alive," said he, And his ghost may be heard as you pass by the billabong, "Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me." Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me And his ghost may be heard as you pass by the billabong, "Who'll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me?"


Explanation of Australian slang (as used in the song)

Billabong: A waterhole.

Billy: A can or small kettle used to boil water for tea.

Coolabah tree: A type of native tree in Australia.

Jumbuck: A sheep. There are 20 times as many sheep as there are people in Australia.

Matilda: Although there are several schools of thought, Matilda as originally used means is of Teutonic origins and means "Mighty Battle Maiden," referring to the women in camps during the Thirty Year Wars in Europe. Later this more commonly referred to the great army coats or blankets that soldiers rolled into a swag and tossed over their shoulders while marching.

Squatter: At one time, squatters claimed (seized) land for themselves in addition to land that they had been granted. Eventually through the continuous occupation of the land, their claims were legitimised in the eyes of the law.

Swagman: Someone who lives on the open road. A hobo. The term came from the canvas bag that they would carry their bedroll and/or belongings in.

Trooper: In Australia's early days, there was no police force. The colony was protected by and policed by soldiers and even when a police force was eventually formed, they were still referred to as 'troopers'.

Tucker bag: A knapsack or bag for storing food in the bush.