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Updated 05/22/2013

 


The Maple Leaf Forever

The Maple Leaf Forever is a Canadian song written by Alexander Muir (18301906) in 1867, the year of Canada's Confederation. Muir was said to have been inspired to write this song by a huge maple tree which stood on his property: Maple Cottage, a house at Memory Lane and Laing Street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The song became quite popular in English Canada and for many years served as an unofficial national anthem. Because of its strongly British perspective it became unpopular amongst French Canadians, and this prevented it from ever becoming an official anthem, even though it was seriously considered for that role. 

It has been asserted that Muir's words, however, while certainly pro-British, were not anti-French, and he revised the lyrics of the first verse to "Here may it [the Union Jack] wave, our boast, our pride, and join in love together.

The Lily, Thistle, Shamrock, Rose, the Maple Leaf forever"; adding "Lily," a French symbol, to the list. According to other accounts, this was actually the original wording. Muir was attempting to express that under the Union Flag the British and French were united as Canadians.  It is also the authorized regimental march of The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada and The Royal Westminster Regiment.


Lyrics by Alexander Muir

In days of yore, from Britain's shore,
Wolfe, the dauntless hero came,
And planted firm Britannia's flag,
On Canada's fair domain.
Here may it wave, our boast, our pride,
And joined in love together,
The thistle, shamrock, rose entwine
he Maple Leaf forever!

Chorus:
The Maple Leaf, our emblem dear,
The Maple Leaf forever!
God save our Queen, and Heaven bless,
The Maple Leaf forever!

At Queenston Heights and Lundy's Lane,
Our brave fathers, side by side,
For freedom, homes, and loved ones dear,
Firmly stood and nobly died;
And those dear rights which they maintained,
We swear to yield them never!
Our watchword evermore shall be,
The Maple Leaf forever!

Chorus

Our fair Dominion now extends
From Cape Race to Nootka Sound;
May peace forever be our lot,
And plenteous store abound:
And may those ties of love be ours
Which discord cannot sever,
And flourish green o'er freedom's home
The Maple Leaf forever!

Chorus:

On merry England's far famed land
May kind heaven sweetly smile,
God bless old Scotland evermore
and Ireland's Em'rald Isle!
And swell the song both loud and long
Till rocks and forest quiver!
God save our Queen and Heaven bless
The Maple Leaf forever!

Chorus