"Reveille" is a bugle call most often associated with the military; it is chiefly used to wake military personnel at sunrise. The name comes from the French for "wake up".

Commonwealth of Nations and the United States

The tune used in the Commonwealth of Nations is different from the one used in the United States, but they are used in analogous ways: to ceremonially start the day.

In modern times the U.S. military plays (or "sounds") "Reveille" in the morning, generally near sunrise, though its exact time varies from base to base. On U.S. Army posts, the national flag is raised while Reveille is played (on board U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard facilities, the flag is generally raised at 0800 while the National Anthem or the bugle call "To the Colors" is played). On some U.S. military bases, it is accompanied with a cannon shot. As it is played all uniformed personnel are required to come to attention and present a salute either to the flag or in the direction of the music if the flag is not visible. [ [ Rendering Honor To The Flag ( ] ]

In the Indian Army, "Reveille" is sounded at 06:00 (or sunrise), and the regimental colours are hoisted. As this also signals the start of the physical training parade, servicemen for practical reasons must awake prior to the sounding of Reveille.

In the Irish Army, "Reveille" is sounded at dawn and at military wreath-laying ceremonies, as on the National Day of Commemoration.

In Commonwealth Remembrance Day and Remembrance Sunday services, "The Last Post" begins the period of silent reflection, and "Reveille" ends it. The two tunes symbolize sunset and sunrise respectively, and therefore death and resurrection. (Sometimes "Reveille" is complemented or replaced by The Rouse, a bugle call commonly mistaken for "Reveille", although these are actually two different tunes.)

Both Commonwealth and United States "Reveilles" can be played with any combination of valves (or all open valves), because they were first played on a bugle, which lacks valves and is played by altering the embouchure.

Reveille can also be played on the drums. An old 1800s sheet exists at


Although there are no official lyrics to Reveille, these unofficial lyrics for the Commonwealth "Reveille" have been recently popularized [ Retrieved October 20, 2006.] :

"Rev-eil-lee! Rev-eil-lee is sounding"
"The bugle calls you from your sleep; it is the break of day."
"You've got to do your duty or you will get no pay."
"Come, wake yourself, rouse yourself out of your sleep"
"And throw off the blankets and take a good peek at all"
"The bright signs of the break of day, so get up and do not delay."

"Get Up!"

"Or-der-ly officer is on his round!"
"And if you're still a-bed he will send you to the guard"
"And then you'll get a drill and that will be a bitter pill:"
"So be up when he comes, be up when he comes,"
"Like a soldier at his post, a soldier at his post, all ser-ene."

To the U.S. tune:

:"I can't get 'em up,":"I can't get 'em up,":"I can't get 'em up this morning;":"I can't get 'em up,":"I can't get 'em up,":"I can't get 'em up at all!"::"The corporal's worse than the privates,"::"The sergeant's worse than the corporals,"::"Lieutenant's worse than the sergeants,"::"And the captain's worst of all!": < repeat top six lines >

An alternate rendition to the U.S. tune above:

:"I can't get 'em up:"I can't get 'em up:"I can't get 'em up this morning;":"I can't get 'em up:"I can't get 'em up:"I can't get 'em up at all!"::"And tho' the sun starts peeping,"::"And dawn has started creeping,"::"Those lazy bums keep sleeping,"::"They never hear my call!": < repeat top six lines >

Still another U.S. version goes:

:"You've got to get up:"You've got to get up:"You've got to get up this morning":"You've got to get up:"You've got to get up:"Get up with the bugler's call"::"The major told the captain"::"The captain told the sergeant"::"The sergeant told the bugler"::"The bugler told them all": < repeat top six lines >

Irving Berlin cited the lyrics in part of his song, "Oh How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning"; from the musical, "This Is the Army":

:The hardest blow of all:Is to hear the bugler call--::"You gotta get up"::"You gotta get up"::"You gotta get up this morning"


Being bugle music, both "Reveille" and "Rouse" are composed solely from the written notes of the C Major triad (i.e. C, E, and G, the tonic, major third, and dominant), these being the only notes available on the instrument.


In Sweden "revelj" (reveille) can be played on bugle, trumpet or drum. Today it is usually played from a recording. There is also a reveille for military band composed by Johann Heinrich Walch, wich is used as the reveille of the Swedish Armed Forces.


External links

* [ Reveille] from official U.S. Army Band website - file in mp3 format
* [ Reveille] from Norwegian Defence Force (His Majesty the King’s Guard) - file in wma format

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • réveillé — réveillé, ée (ré vè llé, llée, ll mouillées) part. passé de réveiller. Tiré du sommeil. Réveillé en sursaut.    Fig. •   Ces larmes que nous arrache l image de nos passions si vivement réveillées [par le théâtre], BOSSUET Coméd. XII. •   Enfin la …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • Reveille — (fr., spr. R weis), 1) Morgensignal mit der Trommel, der Trompete od. dem Flügelhorn, um die Soldaten zu wecken u. zum Aufstehen zu ermahnen. Die R. wird in der Regel geschlagen, wenn der Tag so weit angebrochen ist, daß man groben Druck im… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Reveille — (franz. réveil, spr. wäj , »Erwachen, Weckruf«), militärisch das bei Tagesanbruch mit Trommel, Horn oder Trompete gegebene Signal zum Aufstehen …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

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  • reveille — 1640s, from Fr. réveillez (vous) awaken! imperative plural of réveiller to awaken, to wake up, from M.Fr. re again (see RE (Cf. re )) + eveiller to rouse, from V.L. *exvigilare, from L. ex out + vigilare be awake …   Etymology dictionary

  • reveille — pronounced ri val i, is the current spelling for the word meaning ‘a morning awakening’ (especially in service life) …   Modern English usage

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