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Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?

GUEST,Gail E 14 May 10 - 04:43 PM
Emma B 14 May 10 - 04:49 PM
michaelr 14 May 10 - 07:31 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 14 May 10 - 07:42 PM
Emma B 14 May 10 - 07:47 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 14 May 10 - 07:58 PM
Emma B 14 May 10 - 08:20 PM
Suegorgeous 15 May 10 - 07:25 AM
michaelr 15 May 10 - 12:46 PM
Marje 15 May 10 - 01:26 PM
terrier 15 May 10 - 02:42 PM
GUEST,BigDaddy 15 May 10 - 04:25 PM
Suegorgeous 15 May 10 - 06:15 PM
Gurney 15 May 10 - 06:16 PM
Suegorgeous 15 May 10 - 07:32 PM
Richard Mellish 16 May 10 - 05:35 PM
Suegorgeous 16 May 10 - 09:04 PM
mousethief 16 May 10 - 10:34 PM
Suegorgeous 17 May 10 - 05:32 AM
Jim Dixon 18 May 10 - 07:18 PM
Suegorgeous 18 May 10 - 07:57 PM
GUEST 06 Jun 10 - 07:49 AM
Gurney 06 Jun 10 - 05:34 PM
Suegorgeous 06 Jun 10 - 10:08 PM
Alice 06 Jun 10 - 10:22 PM
Paul Burke 07 Jun 10 - 02:32 PM
Alice 07 Jun 10 - 08:03 PM
GUEST,closer 20 Jul 15 - 10:26 PM
michaelr 20 Jul 15 - 10:32 PM
GUEST,leeneia 21 Jul 15 - 12:03 AM
GUEST,closer 21 Jul 15 - 04:24 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 21 Jul 15 - 05:26 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 21 Jul 15 - 05:30 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 21 Jul 15 - 06:00 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 21 Jul 15 - 10:38 AM
GUEST,Pete MacGregor 21 Jul 15 - 04:14 PM
Mr Red 22 Jul 15 - 05:03 AM
GUEST,closer 22 Jul 15 - 08:03 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 22 Jul 15 - 08:56 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,Gail E
Date: 14 May 10 - 04:43 PM

In My Lagan Love, there is the line:

And often when the beetle's horn
Hath lulled the eve to sleep,

What the heck is he talking about? I have never seen it any other way, but it has the look of a transcription error from "beetle's hum" or something. Can anyone shed light on this?

Also, "The Beetle's Horn" would be a great name for a pub.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Emma B
Date: 14 May 10 - 04:49 PM

"The ability to produce sounds is widely spread among beetles. Acoustic communication is an important means of communication of individuals of one species (signals of identification, call, alarm and threatening)"

It's a lovely line echoed by
"cricket's singing stone,
She spares the bogwood fire,
And hums in sad sweet undertone
The songs of heart's desire"


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: michaelr
Date: 14 May 10 - 07:31 PM

Gail, put "My Lagan Love" in the search box on top of the page, and a number of threads on the subject will come up.

I believe it's "e'e" (eye), not "eve".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 14 May 10 - 07:42 PM

I think it's actually beadle's horn.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Emma B
Date: 14 May 10 - 07:47 PM

Gee Bonnie! that "would awaken the dead" not lull to sleep :)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 14 May 10 - 07:58 PM

I got that from seeing the words in a very old book, and also seem to remember talking to Packie about it, though it's hazy in my mind. I know I have seen that word in print from sources that predate computers by decades, for what that's worth. I wish I could remember what Packie said about it. Will ask him when I next speak to him. But it could signify some sort of end-of-day "taps" I suppose, as sounded by buglers.

Packie also talked about the "cricket's singing-stone" they had in the hearth of his boyhood home, and played me an air from his old days in rural Donegal, called the Fire-stone Lullaby, which was along the same theme. I will have to get him to refresh my memory. (Yeh, I know, he's the oldster and I'm supposed to be... well, let's not go there...)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Emma B
Date: 14 May 10 - 08:20 PM

Joseph Campbell (July 15, 1879 – June 1944) wrote as Seosamh Mac Cathmhaoil and is credited for the English translation to traditional airs, such as My Lagan Love

His 'original' translation must be available I suppose - maybe a bit of research could discover the original Irish too?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 15 May 10 - 07:25 AM

The other current thread on this song suggests "beetle's drone".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: michaelr
Date: 15 May 10 - 12:46 PM

All four verses can be heard in this version.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Marje
Date: 15 May 10 - 01:26 PM

The Beetle's horn? Maybe she drove a VW?

Marje


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: terrier
Date: 15 May 10 - 02:42 PM

I always imagined the beetle's horn to be something akin to the Sandman putting sand into childrens eyes who wouldn't go to sleep. Maybe 'Beetle's Horn' was some sort of potion to induce sleep. Also 'cricket's singing stone' suggested to me the kettle of newly boiled water sitting on the hearth ticking away as it slowly cooled. But then again..


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,BigDaddy
Date: 15 May 10 - 04:25 PM

I always thought maybe it referred to a fifth Beatle who played the tuba. Wasn't his name Billy Shears?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 15 May 10 - 06:15 PM

ok... my little fantasy about beetle's horn meaning... Lying by the fireside, drifting off to sleep (as I often do), sleepily watching a beetle (and its horn) potter over and around the hearthside (as they do), lulling me into sleep... zzzzzzzzzz


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Gurney
Date: 15 May 10 - 06:16 PM

I've always assumed it meant the noise the cricket on the hearth made, scratching it's horny wingcase.
Unusual, lovely, song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 15 May 10 - 07:32 PM

Always love songs with surreal images, like this.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 16 May 10 - 05:35 PM

I have a poor copy of a recording of Dominic Behan singing this song in which I think the phrase may be "beagles' horn", i.e. a horn used by someone hunting with beagles.

And I have always surmised, though without strong conviction, that the other phrase might be "cricket-singing stone", i.e. the stone itself making sounds as it expands or contracts.

Whatever the original words, in Irish or English, they seem to have been somewhat folk processed.

Richard


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 16 May 10 - 09:04 PM

Ah... but whatever horn it is "lulls the EYE to sleep", not the EAR... so mightn't that be a clue that whatever it is is a visual experience? just a theory...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: mousethief
Date: 16 May 10 - 10:34 PM

Or just that it's the eyes that go to sleep (close) and there is no observable going-to-sleep action that ears make?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 17 May 10 - 05:32 AM

But it doesn't have to be observable....the song is in the first person.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 18 May 10 - 07:18 PM

Exerpt from "Elegy on My Dying Ass, Peter" in The works of Peter Pindar [pseud. of John Wolcot], Volume 3 (London: John Walker, 1794), page 151:
    Pleas'd will I tell how oft we us'd to roam;
    How oft we wander'd at the peep of morn;
    Till Night had wrapp'd the world in spectred gloom,
    And Silence listen'd to the beetle's horn.

Excerpt from "The Sylph" in The Evening Fire-side, or Literary Miscellany, (Philadelphia) Vol. 2, No. 11, March 15, 1806, page 82:
    But this offspring of the morn
    Clos'd his short career in night,
    Ere was heard the beetle's horn,
    Or the night-bird wing'd its flight.

Excerpt from "Terrors of Imagination" in Terrors of Imagination and Other Poems by John William Smith (London: C. Cradock and W. Joy, 1814), page 28:
    The elfin fairies, that at close of eve,
    Forth from their caverns in the neighb'ring hills,
    Call'd by the beetle's horn and owlet's hoot
    To trip it mirthfully upon the green,...

Excerpt from "Night" in The Knickerbocker, Vol. 6, No. 3, Sept. 1835, page 261:
    As the tears from angels falling,
    Turn to diamonds in each flower,
    And the beetle's horn is calling
    Fairies to the greenwood bower;...


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 18 May 10 - 07:57 PM

Think you might be onto something there, Jim... :) aw shucks, there's my cherished image shattered... :(

Looks like Marje was spot on, then!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Jun 10 - 07:49 AM

this has all been very enlightening for me, a norwegian, who has been struggling with these lines for several years, trying to explain the meaning of the song to friends. finally i stopped trying and just sang this enthralling peace of poetry and told them to make of it what they wished.

marit berger
transelator and songwriter


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Gurney
Date: 06 Jun 10 - 05:34 PM

Might be drawing a parallel between the crickets tone and a Crumhorn tone.
There are several Crumhorns on YouTube.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 06 Jun 10 - 10:08 PM

Bonnie - is Packie's Fire-stone Lullaby a song? can one hear it anywhere?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Alice
Date: 06 Jun 10 - 10:22 PM

In one of the old threads on My Lagan Love, we discussed the beetle's horn and I think I posted a quote regarding the "good luck" tradition of taking a beetle to a newly-wed couple's hearthstone. If you read the older threads on this song, you may find that.

It is definitely "beetle's horn" in the original lyrics.


Alice


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Paul Burke
Date: 07 Jun 10 - 02:32 PM

"lulls the eve to sleep?"

Drone too for me.

As for "when she was only fairly high"....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Alice
Date: 07 Jun 10 - 08:03 PM

"fairy-high"
another version is "fairy small".

Go to the Origins of Lagan Love thread:


Origins: Lagan Love


Alice


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,closer
Date: 20 Jul 15 - 10:26 PM

It lulls the evening to sleep. The sound it makes puts the evening to bed. The crickets and the beetles make their distinctive sounds back and forth which fill the evening air with reminders that nighttime is coming, a peaceful, mysterious time for reflection, dreaming and longing thoughts of our absent lovers.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: michaelr
Date: 20 Jul 15 - 10:32 PM

Yes, that's very romantic, but not what the text says. It is "e'e" (eye).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 12:03 AM

Once I was camping in Canada, and there was a piece of firewood near the campfire with a beetle in it that made a regular clicking sound. I suppose the warmth of the fire made the beetle more alert, and it started clicking to summon a mate. My father put the piece of wood far into the woods so the beetle would not go in the fire.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,closer
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 04:24 AM

That's the idea. Just as lowly creatures call out to each other in the stillness of lonesome darkness, so do people, who recognize the melancholic tone in those little fellas.

Someone is lovesick. Terrible pain accompanies her unrequited love, disturbing her attempts to drift off to sleep.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 05:26 AM

The same source I referred to above said "Lulls the e'en to sleep" which would indeed mean evening.

Sue - I'm so sorry, I didn't see your question above about the Fire-stone Lullaby until now: It was an air, rather than a song, hence no words. It had quite free rhythm, with lovely rising and falling cadences. SOMEwhere I think I may have a cassette of Packie playing it, but it's inaccessible to me at the moment, I'm afraid.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 05:30 AM

PS: I did ask Packie about "beadle" (as vs. "beetle") and he confirmed it, though I can't remember what else he said.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 06:00 AM

Wow - just did a quick google-search, and the words appear to be connected with Donegal, which I hadn't known. Packie was from that area (Ardara) so that lends some weight. For what it's worth, Wiki says:

- - -

My Lagan Love" is a song to a traditional Irish air collected in 1903 in northern Donegal. The English lyrics have been credited to Joseph Campbell (1879–1944, AKA Seosamh MacCathmhaoil and Joseph McCahill, among others).[1]

Campbell was a Belfast man whose grandparents came from the Irish-speaking area of Flurrybridge, South Armagh. He started collecting songs in County Antrim. In 1904 he began a collaboration with composer Herbert Hughes.[2] Together, they collected traditional airs from the remote parts of County Donegal. While on holidays in Donegal, Hughes had learned the air from Proinseas mac Suibhne, who had learned it from his father Seaghan mac Suibhne, who in turn had learned it fifty years previously.[1]

The Lagan referred to in the title most likely pertains to the area of good farming land between Donegal and Derry known in Irish as An Lagán. The Lagan is the river that runs through Belfast. However, some argue that the Lagan in the song refers to a stream that empties into Lough Swilly in County Donegal, not far from where Herbert Hughes collected the song.[3]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 10:38 AM

Another googleabout reveals that The Ancient Order of Foresters had beadles who carried horns, which at least connects the two words. These were bugle-like cow horns, and seem to have looked like this:

http://www.tennants.co.uk/Catalogue/Lots/175501.aspx

More info is below. It doesn's sound very lulling, though - the only thing I can think of is the end-of-day "taps" idea, with its "all is well, safely rest" theme, which I suggested above. But in the context of this song, that's only a guess.

- - -

'In Forestry the word 'court' is used instead of 'lodge', derived from the law courts of the of the royal forests , which since the Middle Ages had met to administer the special forest laws. Similarly the officers of the society used the titles of officials of the medieval forest courts, such as Ranger and Woodward. Thus the chief official was the Ranger. Courts were guarded by two Beadles, and a Senior and Junior Woodward, whose job was to serve all summonses, visit the sick, dispense allowances and take charge of all court property. The regalia of the Beadles included huge cow horns (real cow horns) [elsewhere described as "bugle horns"] slung from the left shoulder, and axes; each Woodward carried an axe.'

http://www.epsomandewellhistoryexplorer.org.uk/Foresters.html


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,Pete MacGregor
Date: 21 Jul 15 - 04:14 PM

E'en could be the scots plural of eye. as in the Twa Corbies "I'll pike oot his bonnie blue e'en."
PM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Mr Red
Date: 22 Jul 15 - 05:03 AM

the law courts of the of the royal forests sound a lot like Courts Leet. They still exist in Yorkshire mostly run by the farmers who let sheep roam on the hills. Adjudicate on numbers, rights holders, commoners' rights etc.

Dusty Springfield used to sing Lagan Love I have seen it as an archive on TV, she played guitar to it.

And just a thought but do beatles tap more slowly as the dusk turns to night? That would lull people to sleep gently, IMHO.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: GUEST,closer
Date: 22 Jul 15 - 08:03 AM

It is the most hauntingly beautiful song I have ever heard. I get chills listening to it. Church sings it close to perfection. One day it will be recognized as a rare and unequaled masterpiece.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: My Lagan Love: Beetle's horn?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 22 Jul 15 - 08:56 AM

Good point, Pete!

Mr. Red, I think I saw on one of those websites where AOF actually originated in Yorkshire...?


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