National anthems & national songs
Poems archive


At the Commonwealth Games, as at the Olympic Games, the anthem or national song of the winning athlete's country is played at the medal ceremonies. Unlike the Olympics, however, where England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland compete together as the United Kingdom (whose national anthem is God Save the Queen), at the Commonwealth Games they compete as separate nations, and their national songs are played instead. Listen to, and do some exercises on, God Save the Queen and also two other songs that are likely to be heard often at the Games.

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God save our gracious Queen,
Long live our noble Queen,
God save the Queen!
Send her victorious,
Happy and glorious,
Long to reign over us,
God save the Queen!

O lord God arise,
Scatter our enemies,
And make them fall!
Confound their knavish tricks,
Confuse their politics,
On you our hopes we fix,
God save the Queen!

Not in this land alone,
But be God's mercies known,
From shore to shore!
Lord make the nations see,
That men should brothers be,
And form one family,
The wide world ov'er

From every latent foe,
From the assasins blow,
God save the Queen!
O'er her thine arm extend,
For Britain's sake defend,
Our mother, prince, and friend,
God save the Queen!

Thy choicest gifts in store,
On her be pleased to pour,
Long may she reign!
May she defend our laws,
And ever give us cause,
To sing with heart and voice,
God save the Queen!

Listen to this anthem

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Your turn

Imagine that you live in a new country. There is a competition to write the national anthem or song of that country. Write an anthem.

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