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When Johnny comes marching home

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When Johnny comes marching home (also: When Johnny comes marching home again) "is a song from the American civil war that the theme of the desire of the people to the return of their friends and family who fought in the war.

The pro-war song was composed on the melody of a Irish anti-war song, Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye, generally seen as original,[1while there before When Johnny comes marching home was no published version of. [2the same melody is used for the children's songs The Ants Go Marching One By One and The Animals Went in Two by Two.

The text, written by the Irish-American composer Patrick Gilmore, was changed compared to the original, in which Johnny came home blind and crippled at the woman he had left to join the army to go.


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When Johnny comes marching home again, Hurrah! Hurrah! We'll give him a hearty welcome then Hurrah! Hurrah! The men will cheer and the boys will shout The ladies they will all turn out And we'll all feel gay, When Johnny comes marching home.

The old church bell will peal with joy Hurrah! Hurrah! To welcome home our darling boy Hurrah! Hurrah! The village lads and lassies say With roses they will strew the way, And we'll all feel gay When Johnny comes marching home.

Get ready for the Jubilee, Hurrah! Hurrah! We'll give the hero three times three, Hurrah! Hurrah! The laurel wreath is ready now To place upon his loyal brow And we'll all feel gay When Johnny comes marching home.

Let love and friendship on that day, Hurrah, hurrah! Their choicest treasures then display, Hurrah, hurrah! And let each one perform some part, To fill with joy the Warrior's heart, And we'll all feel gay When Johnny comes marching home


  • The music of this song is used with different lyrics by The Clash for their song English Civil War.
  • The song is used several times in the film Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb by Stanley Kubrick
  • The song is also used in the film Die Hard: With a Vengeance with Bruce Willis.
  • The use of the word gay in the lyrics has the older meaning of "carefree" "excited"
  • The music is also used in a by jibjab made mini film about Barack Obama.
  • The melody is also used by Pater Moeskroen in the song "last night"
  • Different groups of football fans singing the song, with custom text.
  • Also student clubs use the melody. The Antwerp club Brabo and the Leuven club the West-Flemish-order and the Diepenbeekse club use the tune of Caeruleus When Johnny comes marching home for their student song
  • In the film Antz singing this song the ants when they denounce the termites.

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