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Back info: The Flower of Finae

GUEST,Francesco 28 Aug 01 - 05:14 AM
Noreen 28 Aug 01 - 02:28 PM
GUEST,Annraoi 28 Aug 01 - 04:16 PM
GUEST,Martin Ryan 28 Aug 01 - 07:38 PM
Fiolar 29 Aug 01 - 05:45 AM
GUEST,Francesco 30 Aug 01 - 04:32 AM
GUEST,Annraoi 30 Aug 01 - 03:45 PM
Fiolar 04 Sep 01 - 09:42 AM
The_one_and_only_Dai 04 Sep 01 - 09:48 AM
The_one_and_only_Dai 04 Sep 01 - 09:50 AM
GUEST,Annraoi 04 Sep 01 - 09:35 PM
The_one_and_only_Dai 05 Sep 01 - 05:24 AM
GUEST,Annraoi 05 Sep 01 - 10:01 PM
The_one_and_only_Dai 06 Sep 01 - 04:04 AM
GUEST,Sarsfield fan 02 Dec 11 - 06:07 PM
Noreen 03 Dec 11 - 07:46 AM
GUEST,dnimhathuna 18 Oct 17 - 06:33 AM
GUEST,Martin Ryan 18 Oct 17 - 10:45 AM
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Subject: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Francesco
Date: 28 Aug 01 - 05:14 AM

Hi all, I have recently listened to that traditional song, sung by Niamh Parsons. It tells the story of a wild goose (Fergus O'Farrell) and his love (Eily McMahon, the flower of Finae). I need a help to understand some lyrics.

"He fought at Cremona ? she hears of his story He fought at Cassano ? she?s pride of his glory Yet sadly she sings Siubhail a Ruin all the day O come home my darling, come home to Finae."

What is Siubhail a Ruin ?

Later on "Lord Clare in the fields of Rammillies is changing Before him the Sesanach squadrons enlarging Behind him the Cavats, their section display Besides him rides Fergus and shouts for Finae."

What are the Cavats? What does that whole mean?

Many thnaks for your help

Francesco


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: Noreen
Date: 28 Aug 01 - 02:28 PM

Siubhail a Ruin in anglicised spelling becomes SHULE AROON (click here for the words in the DT)

The following page also has notes on the song, and there have been several discussions on it in threads here. I'll look them up if you're interested.

Cremona, Cassano and Rammillies would be the names of battles, and the "Lord Clare" paragraph seems to describe a battle.

Noreen


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Annraoi
Date: 28 Aug 01 - 04:16 PM

These were indeed battles on the mainland of Europe in whuch the exiled Irish troops called "The Wild Geese" fought as mercenaries. Lord Clare was the leader of a Regiment known after him as "Clare's Dragoons". Their gratest triumph, among many, was the Battle of Ramilles. When the English forces had turned the French, Lord Clare spurred his Irish troops into action with the battle cry "Cuimhnígí ar Luimneach" (Remember Limerick!). The English were routed.
The words here given don't appear to be traditional in origin. They sound very like the sort of thing nineteenth century Irish romantic writers penned.
For further details, consult a historian.
Annraoi


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Martin Ryan
Date: 28 Aug 01 - 07:38 PM

Words are by Thomas Davis, Irish poet and patriot in mid 19C.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: Fiolar
Date: 29 Aug 01 - 05:45 AM

Annraoi: Sorry to disagree with the info you posted. The French were utterly routed at Ramillies by the combined British and Dutch forces under the Duke of Marlborough. The French lost 8,000 killed and wounded with 7,000 being taken prisoner. The battle in which the Irish Brigade saved the day was at Fontenoy on May 11th 1745 when the British troops were under the command of the Duke of Cumberland who later became famous or infamous as "Butcher" Cumberland following the Battle of Culloden. "Fontenoy" a poem describing the battle was also written by Thomas Davis.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Francesco
Date: 30 Aug 01 - 04:32 AM

Many thanks to all for the great help. As always, nothing better than posting a message and wait for......surprises. Many thanks indeed.

Noreen, thanks for the link and the other info.

Annraoi, Fiolar, re the battles and the wild geese, I agree with Fiolar. The wild geese were defeated in Rammillies. All these battles (Cremona, Cassano, Rammillies) are part of the War of Spanish Succession (1701-1714). I do know the story of the wild geese (thanks to www.thewildgeese.com). Yet, I have to humbly ask for your help again in order to understand that paragraph. What are the Cavats? Can you translate with your own words the whole paragraph?

Annraoi: your clue about the true age of the song (confirmed by Martin Ryan, thank you Martin) helps me understand a possible "mistake" in the song. The hero, Fergus O' Farrell (a wild goose that joined the War of Spanish Succession with his sire-land, Lord Clare), fought his first battle in Cremona (1702) and his last in Rammillies (1706) where he died (I guess, it is not said in the song). Now, why does the song say that "Eight long years have passed...." (for Eily, which is alone in Finae)? The years passed should be not more than four or five (from the beginning of the war 1701 till Fergus' death in Rammillies, 1706).

Thank you Francesco


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Annraoi
Date: 30 Aug 01 - 03:45 PM

Thank you Fiolar,
I'm always ready to yield to the experts. I am not a historian, hence nmy exhortation in my earlier post. But what, then , is the point of the words in the song "Clare's Dragoons" :-
"......... Saxons backward reeled before the charge of Clare's Dragoons" ?
Also the reference to the battle standards won at Ramillies by the Wild Geese being displayed in "Ypres' choir" ?
Annraoi


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: Fiolar
Date: 04 Sep 01 - 09:42 AM

An explanation of some of the items mentioned.

"Lord Clare on the field of Rammillies is charging;
Before him the Sassanach squadrons enlarging;
Behind him the Cravats, their sections display.
Beside him rides Fergus and shouts for Finae."

The word is "Cravats" and not "Cavats." In the French army there was cavalry composed exclusively of Croats called the "Royal - Cravate." This section existed from 1664 to 1789. These soldiers gave to the world the tie called "la cravate" by the French. So the use of the word "Cravats" by Davis in the song would relate to the Croatian cavalry who fought at Rammillies. Regarding the "eight long years" there is no date given when Fergus left Ireland so it's fair to assume that he left in the late 1690s. Annraoi: Don't forget Thomas Davis was an ardent Irish patriot and Clare's Dragoons had met the British before. Also in the "Flower of Finae" it mentions "The flag's the sole trophy of Rammillies' fray" so it is possible that one of the Brigade could have snatched a British flag in the heat of battle.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: The_one_and_only_Dai
Date: 04 Sep 01 - 09:48 AM

Annroi - "Ypres' choir" would refer to the section of a church - I think it's between the nave and the altar, but my ecclesiastical/architectural knowledge is somewhat shaky. In some churches in the UK with certain associations, that's where military/historical flags are displayed. HTH.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: The_one_and_only_Dai
Date: 04 Sep 01 - 09:50 AM

Some confusion over 'captured' colours may have been caused by the similarity of French colours in the Seven Years' War to their counterparts in the British military. Have a look at http://members.tripod.com/TomGr/france1.htm for some examples


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Annraoi
Date: 04 Sep 01 - 09:35 PM

Thank you Dai,
I am quite well aware of what and where the "choir" of a church is. My question had nothing to do with that at all but concerned the plurality of the flags captured by Clare's Dragoons as mentioned in the song.
Annraoi


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: The_one_and_only_Dai
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 05:24 AM

OK Annraoi, I mistakenly interpreted your quotes as emphasis...

Maybe 'standards' just scans better? I find that songs about victory can have a tendency to be partisan? (i.e. they're more about rubbing the other side's nose in it than recording an event for posterity)


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Annraoi
Date: 05 Sep 01 - 10:01 PM

So ? That's what victory is all about - beating your opponent. You can't get more partisan than that, can you ? As for "rubbing the other side's nose in it than recording an event for posterity", so what ? History is written by the victors. Recording the event goes like this:=
"My Red Indian ancestors were killed by whites." That's history recording an event.
"My white ancestors killed Red Indians." That is also history recording the same event. Which one you sympathise with will reflect your partisanship.
And before anyone starts any PC nonsense, changing "Red Indians" to "Native Americans" and "Whites" to "Caucasians" does not bring any dead people back to life.
Annraoi


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: The_one_and_only_Dai
Date: 06 Sep 01 - 04:04 AM

I agree. I only pointed that out to ilustrate that some details may have been changed to make a better song. So what? You're not going to write an authoritative history textbook based only on folk song, are you?

Some of my favourite songs about historical events are apocryphal, to say the least. I think you may have misinterpreted me, but then that's the folk process at work again...


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Sarsfield fan
Date: 02 Dec 11 - 06:07 PM

Ramillies, May 1706:
Overall the battle was a defeat for the French (including the Irish Brigade) but Clare's Dragoons counterattacked, regaining their own flag and capturing a British Regiment's flag also (the "Buffs"?). The Irish Brigade flag (carrying the harp symbol) was displayed at the Benedictine convent in Ypres up until the First World War when the convent was destroyed (remember there were several battles at Ypres in WW1) and the nun's later moved to Kylemore Abbey in Connemara, where the Brigade flag is still on display. A great story I think.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: Noreen
Date: 03 Dec 11 - 07:46 AM

Thank you, Sarsfield fan, that adds further background and understanding to this lovely song.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,dnimhathuna
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 06:33 AM

Buit can anyone tell me where Finae is or was? I heard last night that it oculd be in Cavan.


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Subject: RE: Back info: The Flower of Finae
From: GUEST,Martin Ryan
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 10:45 AM

This is probably it, with some historical detail...

Finae

Regards


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