Culture, Politics

The Ancient (and Funny) Roots of the National Anthem

The Star-Spangled Banner. Certainly, it’s America’s national anthem, but July 4, Independence Day is that day where it carries that extra bit of weight.

Written as a poem by Francis Scott Key, a lawyer and amateur poet who, famously, was inspired to write the poem after watching the flag continue to fly during the British shelling of Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore in 1812.

The poem was named “Defence of Fort M’Henry,” reflecting American English of the time. While some may think that the tune was from a “British drinking song,” that is not quite the story. Read more…

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