When the Spanish beat the English

The isleños (islanders), the Canarian-based dialect speakers based in St Bernard parish near New Orleans, are some of the less-publicised victims of the floods. Their victory against age-old enemies in the interests of yet more Anglo hegemony is commemorated in this 1970s song (more links; Mississippi song project):

Setecientos setentaisiete,
varias familias dejaron las Islas Canarias,
para la costa de Cuba,
del sur de la Luisiana.

En sur de la Luisiana
y en tierra regalada,
se pusieron de jardineros,
para mantenerse estas familias.

Varios fueron de soldados;
pelearon por su libertad.
También salieron victoriosos
y encontra de Inglaterra.

¡Viva España y su bandera!
Que con todo mi corazón,
sé que somos americanos,
pero sangre de español.


In seventeen seventy-seven,
some families left the Canary Islands,
for the shores of Cuba
and Southern Louisiana.

In Southern Louisiana
and on land that was given to them,
they became farmers
to maintain their families.

Some became soldiers;
they fought for their freedom.
They were also victorious
fighting against England.

Long live Spain and her flag!
For with all my heart,
I know we’re Americans,
but our blood is Spanish!


There’s a lovely little piece by Samuel G Armistead here in which he suggests that the denomination by the so-called , of their southern Slav neighbours and fellow fishers as tacos has nothing to with the Austro-Hungarian past (austriacostacos) but rather reflects the latters’ use of tàko to punctuate conversation.

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