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Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu

DigiTrad:
O'DONNELL ABU (The Clan Connell War Song)


10 Feb 98 - 10:00 AM
Bo 10 Feb 98 - 10:49 AM
Wolfgang Hell 10 Feb 98 - 11:04 AM
Wolfgang 10 Feb 98 - 11:15 AM
Jaxon 10 Feb 98 - 11:59 AM
Bruce O. 10 Feb 98 - 12:28 PM
14 Feb 98 - 06:44 PM
Martin Ryan 15 Feb 98 - 12:04 PM
Bo 15 Feb 98 - 01:21 PM
Martin 15 Feb 98 - 07:15 PM
GUEST,Philippa 12 Mar 02 - 09:05 AM
Big Tim 12 Mar 02 - 11:29 AM
PeteBoom 12 Mar 02 - 12:13 PM
gnu 12 Mar 02 - 01:14 PM
gnu 13 Mar 02 - 08:38 AM
MMario 13 Mar 02 - 08:49 AM
GUEST,Martin Ryan 13 Mar 02 - 10:51 AM
MartinRyan 13 Mar 02 - 04:40 PM
PeteBoom 14 Mar 02 - 12:12 PM
Mark Ross 14 Mar 02 - 04:25 PM
gnu 14 Mar 02 - 04:32 PM
Mark Ross 14 Mar 02 - 10:32 PM
gnu 15 Mar 02 - 07:24 PM
raredance 17 Mar 02 - 01:13 PM
GUEST,Philippa 25 Mar 02 - 11:00 AM
GUEST,Philippa 25 Mar 02 - 11:06 AM
GUEST,Mike 08 Oct 02 - 08:41 AM
Jim McLean 08 Oct 02 - 01:02 PM
Big Tim 23 Sep 03 - 12:35 PM
Reiver 2 23 Sep 03 - 08:11 PM
Noel P 19 Nov 03 - 12:41 PM
GUEST,Philippa 25 Nov 03 - 06:28 AM
bill\sables 25 Nov 03 - 12:36 PM
ard mhacha 25 Nov 03 - 12:59 PM
Big Tim 01 Mar 04 - 10:01 AM
Jorrox 09 Dec 16 - 12:56 PM
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Subject: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From:
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 10:00 AM

Here's a song I heard by Tommy Makem and the Clancy Brothers in concert and it was done with the bodhran and that's it.

O'Donnell Abu


Proudly the note of the trumpet is sounding
Loudly the war cries arise on the gail
fleetly the steed by Laswaly is bounding
to join the thick squadrons on Savours green veil
On every mountaineer strangers to flight of fear
Rush to the standard of dauntless Red Hugh
Bonope and Gallow glass clung from each mountain pass
Onward for Erin O'Donnell Abu


Princely O'Neil to our aid is advancing
with many a chieftan and warrior clan
A thousand proud steeds in his vangad are prancing
The boarders brave from the banks of the band
Many a hand shall quail, under it's coat of mail
Deeply the mercy of LesBoam and Shuru
When on his ears shall ring, born opn the breezes wing
TirConnell's Red War Cry, O'Donnell Abu


Wildly Odarsmen the war wolf is howling
fearless the eagle sweeps over the plain
The fox in the streets of the city is prowling
and all who would scare him are banished or slain
On with O'Donnell then, fight the old fight again
sons of TirConnell are valient and true
Make the proud Saxon feel, Erin's avenging steel
STRIKE! for your country O'Donnell Abu!


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Bo
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 10:49 AM

The Tommy Makem song I would like the lyrics to, I dont think its in the DT, is the "Raping of the Gael".

bo


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Wolfgang Hell
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 11:04 AM

Fine song, but it is already in the database, though the tune is still missing...


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Wolfgang
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 11:15 AM

...referring to "O'Donnell Abu"


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Jaxon
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 11:59 AM

This song almost became the national anthem of Ireland. I believe Abu means "onward" as in a battle cry. A great song.

Jack Murray


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Subject: Tune Add: O'DONNELL ABOO
From: Bruce O.
Date: 10 Feb 98 - 12:28 PM

I thought I posted this a little earlier, maybe I put it in the wrong thread.

X:1
T:O'Donnell Aboo
N:O'Neill's Music of Ireland #259, as song air
N:also in Roche Collection, II, #331, as a march
L:1/4
M:C
K:D
A/4F/4|DD/F/AF/A/|fd/B/AG/F/|EE/F/GF/E/|DD/F/AA/4G/4F/4E/4|\
DD/F/AF/A/|fd/B/ A/G/F|Ee/d/ c/A/B/c/|dd/e/dz/:|\
fe/c/ d/c/B/A/|dd/B/ A/F/D|GG3/4G/4 F/A/G/F/|\
EE3/4F/4E A/4G/4F/4E/4|DD/F/AF/A/|fd/B/ AG/F/|\
Ee/d/ c/A/B/c/|dd3/4e/4dz|]


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Subject: DT Correction: O'Donnell Abu
From:
Date: 14 Feb 98 - 06:44 PM

Here are some corrections (mostly minor, one major) on the version in the DT. I'm too tired (lazy?) to edit the line breaks!

O'DONNELL ABU (The Clan Connell War Song)
(M. J. McCann cir. 1843 - maybe a bit later - he was born in 1824)

Proudly the note of the trumpet is sounding
Loudly the war cries arise on the gale
Fleetly the steed by Lough Swilly is bounding
To join the thick squadrons on Saimiers green vale!
On every mountaineer! Stranger to flight or fear!
Rush to the standard of dauntless Red Hugh!
Bonnaught and Gallowglass, throng from each mountain pass!
On for old Erin! O'Donnell abu!

Princely O'Neill to our aid is advancing
With many a chieftain and warrior clan!
A thousand proud steeds in his vanguard are prancing
'Neath the Borderers brave from the banks of the Bann!
Many a heart shall quail under its coat of mail,
Deeply the merciless foeman shall rue
When on his ear shall ring, borne on the breezes wing
TyrConnell's dread war cry - O'Donnell abu!

Wildly o'er Desmond the warwolf is howling
Fearless the eagle sweeps over the plain
The fox in the streets of the city is prowling
And all who would scare them are banished, or slain!
GRASP EVERY STALWART HAND
HACKBUTT AND BATTLE-BRAND
PAY THEM ALL BACK THE DEEP DEBT SO LONG DUE
NORRIS AND CLIFFORD WELL CAN TIR-CONAILL TELL
ONWARD TO GLORY - O DONNELL ABU

SACRED THE CAUSE THAT CLAN-CONAILL'S DEFENDING
THE ALTARS WE KNEEL AT, THE HOMES OF OUR SIRES
RUTHLESS THE RUIN THE FOE IS EXTENDING
MIDNIGHT IS RED WITH THE PLUNDERERS FIRES
On with O'Donnell then! Fight the good fight again!
Sons of TyrConnell are valiant and true!
Make the proud Saxon feel Erin's avenging steel!
Strike! For your Country! O'Donnell abu!

NOTES

Lough Swilly, Saimier, TyrConnail and Desmond are all placenames.
The song was written for the nationalist newspaper The Nation in the 1840's, by M J McCann, in the rather ornate style of the time.

The song celebrates a victory by Red Hugh O'Donell over Sir Conyers Clifford at Ballyshannon (old name was Saimear), Donegal in 1597.

"Gallowglass" is essentially a mercenary soldier, usually Scottish. "Bonnought", I don't understand (Joyceans keep off!).

For many years, a version of this tune was used as the signature tune of Radio Eireann, the Irish national broadcasting service. It's now down to a few notes which barely suggest its origin!

Regards

p.s. Source: Sean McMahon's Poolbeg book of Irish Ballads.


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Martin Ryan
Date: 15 Feb 98 - 12:04 PM

That last posting was mine - I forgot I wasn't on my own machine!

Regards


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Bo
Date: 15 Feb 98 - 01:21 PM

Re: "Bonnought", I don't understand (Joyceans keep off!).

The DT has: "Connaught and Gallowglass, throng from each mountain pass"

That would at least make sense as a regional faction and a troup of mercenaries.

Martin, what do you think???

Most of your other corrections make sense as reigning in the Folk Process. (often a good thing) and thank you for listing your source. I TAKE IT YOUR CAPITALS ARE YOUR CORRECTIONS OF TH E DT.

Bo (sorry got to run)


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Martin
Date: 15 Feb 98 - 07:15 PM

Bo

Yes the capitals were the corrections - apologies for the lazy style.The DT version (and the Clancy's) seems to have telescoped two verses.

The Joyce reference was to a famous Canadian "translation" of "Finnegans Wake" many years ago which misread "bannocks" as "Scottish (or even Scots) pancakes" when Joyce was punning on the Gaelic (Irish) word "beannacht" meaning "blessings". I was trying to avoid another "Celtic" flare-up! (See the Celtic Music thread)

Anyway, a quick enquiry today suggested a relationship to "bonnet" as in military headgear - don't know if it makes sense.

Regards


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 12 Mar 02 - 09:05 AM

Is there a linguist or Welsh speaker out there who can tell me if there is any etymological link between the Irish "abú" as in "O'Donnell abú" and the Welsh as in "Cymru am byth", "Wales forever" (or so I've been told)?


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Big Tim
Date: 12 Mar 02 - 11:29 AM

I fear that I'm old enough to remember this being played on Radio Eireinn, no wonder I have nationalist tendencies!

According to Padraic Colum in his "A Treasury of Irish Folklore", page 211, "the phrase 'abu' or 'a buaidh' is very commonly and incorrectly rendered in English [as] 'for ever'. The phrase 'go brath' is capable of such a translation but not'abu' which means 'to victory' ".

Poor old Sir Conyers Clifford lost his head (the common practice of the times) as well as the Battle of the Curlews, 1599 not '97, according to my history books.


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: PeteBoom
Date: 12 Mar 02 - 12:13 PM

Ahem... While "Gallowglass" was a foreign warrior (literally), a "Bonnought" was a native professional warrior.

I find this song bloody terrible - a "german style march" thing about long-dead Irish heroes. The ONE thing it has going for it is that it is about a battle that was WON. There are SCORES of Irish "rebel songs" about battles that were not only fruitless, but pointless.

Pete


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: gnu
Date: 12 Mar 02 - 01:14 PM

Now, this may be a stunned question, but are we all agreed that it's "Bonnoght and Gallowglass..." and perhaps not "Bonnoght on Gallowglass..." as per all of the texts I have studied ? I recall seeing "Bonnoght ahn Gallowglass...", or close, somewhere, probably just in my own mind, but I'll be damned if I can find it now. I always thought that the "translation" was "Blessings on the mercenaries...", those being supplied by Phillip III of Spain in 1601 by way of an expeditionary force sent to Munster to join Hugh Roe O'Donnell due to the previous successes of O"Donnell in 1595, 97 and 99.

Any hope that this could be the intent ?


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: gnu
Date: 13 Mar 02 - 08:38 AM

Well, I really didn't think that post would kill this thread. Or are you guys just mulling it over carefully ?


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: MMario
Date: 13 Mar 02 - 08:49 AM

the only reference I can find to "bonnought" on the net is this song!


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: GUEST,Martin Ryan
Date: 13 Mar 02 - 10:51 AM

Have a look at This! I've no idea if its reliable but it is consistent with the word meaning a soldier, alright.

Regards


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: MartinRyan
Date: 13 Mar 02 - 04:40 PM

PeteBoom is basically correct. A historian friend tells me that the armmies of the major clans at the time basically consisted of:
- a small standing army of "kerns"
- mercenaries (often Scottish) called "gallowglass"
- troops supplied by minor clans and septs, as tribute, called "bonnaughts".

The tribute/tax element suggests the word may indeed be cognate with "beannacht" meaning blessing, I suppose.

Regards


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: PeteBoom
Date: 14 Mar 02 - 12:12 PM

Kerns were apprentice warriors. They learned their trade by following the example of the gallowglass.

The only reason "Bonnought" was found in a search was this thread, is because it is misspelled. Correct spelling is in MartinRyan's post above.

The weakness to this system was the lack of unit cohesion. It more closely followed traditional warfare of Ireland and Scotland where maneuver was not a strong point. It relied on the professionals (gallowglass and bonnaught) to break through the opposing line, thus allowing the kerns to exploit the break. This worked very well in some situations, but trained troops capable of holding their ground had the edge in open field combat situations.

Logically speaking, if a bonnaught was NOT a warrior, why in heaven's name would they join the gallowglass to "throng from each mountain pass"?

Regards -

Pete


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Mark Ross
Date: 14 Mar 02 - 04:25 PM

If you're looking for a recording of the tune, check a CD by John"The Yank" Harrington, A CELTIC CENTURY. He just turned 99 on Sunday and has been playing that tune for almost 90 years on the button box. He lives in Butte, Montana.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: gnu
Date: 14 Mar 02 - 04:32 PM

Does he sing as well ? I've got a fetish, if you could call it that, for collecting recordings of "wise and experienced" artists. I started this years ago at the Miramichi Folk Song Festival in New Brunswick, Canada, when I heard some old lads sing old lumber camp tunes.

Got any details Mark ?


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Mark Ross
Date: 14 Mar 02 - 10:32 PM

Mo, gnu,(try saying that 3 times fast). The Yank doesn't sing, at least not when he's playing his instrument. He dowes remember lyrics, but only sporadically.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: gnu
Date: 15 Mar 02 - 07:24 PM

Thanks for the reply Mark. For anyone out there who also appreciates listening to the elerly sing the songs of yesteryear, may I offer the most endearing recording of such music I have ever heard, "Vive La Rose" by octegenarian Emile Benoit of Newfoundland. The music is "Jauquatar" (spelling varies) but is a distinct mixture of Celtic and French. It's great tunes... trust me.


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: raredance
Date: 17 Mar 02 - 01:13 PM

Notes in "The Irish Songbook" by the Clancy's & Makem add that the author of the verse, Michael Joseph McCann, was a professor at St Jarleth College, Tuam, County Mayo and that the music was written by a military bandmaster from Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary. They say that "ODonnell Abu" came in a close second to "The Soldier Song" in the voting for a national anthem.

rich r


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Subject: Lyr Add: Ó DOMHNAILL ABÚ
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 25 Mar 02 - 11:00 AM

An Irish language version published in "Taisce Filíochta 2", put together by 'Gaeil Uladh'
No other publication or background information given:

corrections made per Philippa's request

Ó DOMHNAILL ABÚ

Tá loinnir na lanntrach ag síneadh go líofa
Chomh tiubh leis na fuinseogaí i gcoill Dhún n na nGall
Tá muing ár gcuid eachra ag siabadh le gaoith uainn
Agus carnadh a gcuid crúb mór ag réabadh na mbeann.
Réabfar is roisfear linn
Brisfear is loiscfear linn
Caisleáin is cathracha is neartmhaire clú.
Éifeacht ár sinsear linn,
Crógacht is cinnteacht linn
Ar astar na gcuradh linn - Ó Domhnaill abú!

Tá tailte Thír Eoghain ar ár n-aistear ag síneadh
Agus dúthaí Uí Catháin in ar an bhealach na ngleann,
Tá tuilte na Banna romhainn ag dóirteadh go líonmhar
Agus dúntaí agus laochra ar a bruacha tá teann,
Triallfar na mílte linn
Cloisfear na laochra linn
Falcfar go hurlár gcuid sleanntrach le crú,
Feoimhach is fabhairteach'
Díoscarnach, dramhaltach
A dhéanfar gur treise linn - Ó Domhnaill abú!


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 25 Mar 02 - 11:06 AM

Can anyone answer my question about a possible linguistic connection between the words "abú" and [Welsh language]"am byth"?


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: GUEST,Mike
Date: 08 Oct 02 - 08:41 AM

Tommy Makem has the lyrics to "Rape of the Gael" on his website: http://www.makem.com/discography/recordings/lyricpage/rapeofthegael.html
should get you the lyrics.

Cheers and all,
Mike


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Jim McLean
Date: 08 Oct 02 - 01:02 PM

The late Luke Kelly of The Dubliners told me they used to march into school to Donnell Abu. I have often though the tune was the forerunner to Scotland the Brave.
Jim McLean


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Big Tim
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 12:35 PM

I was in this area last week and my interest in the song was rekindled. According to the Oxford Companion to Irish History, "bonaght" (not "bonnaght")is the anglicization of the Irish word "buannacht". It "signified from the 12th to the 16th centuries the billeting of mercenary soldiers on civilians...first found in Irish texts of the 11th and 12th centuries with the meaning 'hired soldiers'. English writers in the Tudor period often use the abstract 'bonaght' to denote the mercenaries themselves, rather than the imposition".

The song was first pubd. in the "Nation" on 28 January 1843 (Oxford Companion to Irish Literature). The music was written by Joseph Haliday, of Carrick-on-Suir, Tipp., died 1846 ("The O'Donnells of Tir Chonaill: a concise history of the O'Donnell clan", by Vincent O'Donnell,1989).

Anyone got any info on "Saimer"? There is a small island on the River Erne at Ballyshannon named - Inish [island]"Samer" - and possibly the whole town used to be called that. At present, there is a shopping centre in Ballyshannon called "Samer"! A local man told me it was the name of Red Hugh O'Donnell's dog!


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Reiver 2
Date: 23 Sep 03 - 08:11 PM

VERY interesting thread. Thanks to all, especially Martin, Pete, Mark and Philippa. I'd always sung it "Connaught" as I didn't know what "bonnaught" meant... now I know better. I never knew what Saimer referred to, so knowing it was an old name for Ballyshannon is a help, also. My info is that "Abu" means "Onward" - is that the concensus here? "Brand" is a sword so "battle-brand" would be a battle sword, but what exactly is (was) a "hackbutt"? (And how close is the literal translation of today?) My words are from "The Singing Irish" edited by Dominic Behan and are identical to Martin's.

Reiver 2


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Subject: RE: LYR ADD: O'Donnell Abu
From: Noel P
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 12:41 PM

Alas, St Jarlath's Collage, Tuam is in Co. Galway not in Co Mayo!
I know, I spent 5 years (too many) there!
A great song. I still have it on vinyl (Makem and Clancy live).
Abú, I reckon should translate as onward, to victory


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 06:28 AM

There may be some problems reading the earlier post, so I am re-submitting these lyrics with ampersand numerical codes for the letters with accent marks. An Irish language version published in "Taisce Filíochta 2" put together by 'Gaeil Uladh' No other publication or background information given   

Ó DOMHNAILL ABÚ

Tá loinnir na lanntrach ag síneadh go líofa
Chomh tiubh leis na fuinseogaí i gcoill Dhú n na nGall
Tá muing ár gcuid eachra ag siabadh le gaoith uainn
Agus carnadh a gcuid crúb mór ag réabadh na mbeann.
Réabfar is roisfear linn
Brisfear is loiscfear linn
Caisleáin is cathracha is neartmhaire clú.
Éifeacht ár sinsear linn,
Crógacht is cinnteacht linn
Ar astar na gcuradh linn - Ó Domhnaill abú!

Tá tailte Thír Eoghain ar ár n-aistear ag síneadh
Agus dúthaí Uí Catháin ar an bhealach na ngleann,
Tá tuilte na Banna romhainn ag dóirteadh go líonmhar
Agus dúntaí agus laochra ar a bruacha tá teann,
Triallfar na mílte linn
Cloisfear na laochra linn
Falcfar go hurla ár gcuid sleanntrach le cró,
Feolmhach is fabhairteach'
Díoscarnach, dramhaltach
A dhéanfar gur treise linn - Ó Domhnaill abú!

--I believe hurla is correct, the hilts of our swords - disregard my correction of 25 March 2002


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu
From: bill\sables
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 12:36 PM

This song was the theme tune for the film "The Fighting Prince of Donegal" way back in the 60's


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu
From: ard mhacha
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 12:59 PM

The air can still be heard on RTE at 6am, I heard it a couple of weeks ago on a Sunday morning, that old tinkly Harp rattles it out a few times. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu
From: Big Tim
Date: 01 Mar 04 - 10:01 AM

Just found out about "Saimear". It was the name given to a dog owned by Dealgnaid, wife of Partholon, about 1500BC!!!!!!!!

Partholon was a Greek who settled in Ireland and became an important chieftain, at least in myth. Dealgnaid had an affair with a slave, Todga, and Partholon, instead of killing her, killed her dog and threw it in the River Erne, so the islet there at Ballyshannon was given the name, "Saimear".

Later it came to be symbolic of Donegal, and the Irish cause in general. Red Hugh O'Donnell referred to it in his address to his men before the Battle of the Curlews in 1599, just north of Boyle, Roscommon: (not at Ballyshannon, sorry Martin)!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: O'Donnell Abu
From: Jorrox
Date: 09 Dec 16 - 12:56 PM

Does anyone know of a (vocal) recording that pre-dates The Clancy Brothers & Tommy Makem in 1956?


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