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Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)

In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Races of Ballyhooly

GUEST,Philippa 13 Mar 03 - 05:43 AM
MMario 13 Mar 03 - 02:23 PM
AmyLove 29 Jan 17 - 05:28 PM
GUEST 30 Jan 17 - 12:54 AM
Thompson 30 Jan 17 - 12:59 AM
AmyLove 30 Jan 17 - 11:28 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 13 Mar 03 - 05:43 AM

I was attracted to this song by its title, but I soon found it was very different from the King of Ballyhooley (in DT) or The Temperance Brigade of Ballyhooly. Translations and background follow the Irish lyrics -


Tá scéal agam le hinnsint is ná smaoinidh gur bréag é,
Cé gur fada táimid síos aige síolrach na méirleach
Beidh prócadóirí Gallda go fannlag gan éifeacht
Gan chlú, gan mheas, gan séan, gan rath, gan bia, gan deoch, gan éadach.
Preabhaidh in bhur seasamh is árduídh bhur n-inntinn,
Tá an deachú leis a' bhfán is gan fail chasta choíche air,
Ruaigfimid na h-Órangemen 'gus déanfaimid a ndíbirt;
Beidh ministry fé bhrón is a ndóirse aca dúnta -
'S ba bhinne leat an lá úd ná Ráiseanna Bh'l Áth' Úla

Ar an nGort Rua do thuit ár gcómharsain le h-órduithe láimhte,
Beidh Ríocht gheal na Glóire go deo aca mar árus;
Beidh Dia mór na gCómhacht ann i gcóir go fuíom sásamh,
Go gcrochtar iad le córda nó go ndóitear 'n-a gcnámhnaibh.
Má thigid na sméirligh saor abhaile ón gcúis seo,
Beifar 'n-a gcóir fós, mo bhrón-sa! Lá an Chúntais;
Beidh fuil na bhfiréan idir an soéir is a súile,
Beidh an dial is a ghárda dá n-árdach chun siúil leis -
'S ba bhinne leat an lá úd ná Ráiseanna Bh'l Áth' Úla

Le trí chéad bliain d'fhág Séamus bréan ár n-aigne go buartha,
Fé bhrón, fé smacht, gan choir, gan cheart,
Ach allus le n-ár ngruanaibh,
ár n-Eaglais a' léamh Aifrinn le h-anaither i ngleanntaibh,
'S a dtréada 'dul ar strae aca gach éan[aon]-mhaidin Domhnaigh,
Anois tá eagla ar chách gur i lár do bheidh i dteampuill,
Tá prapaí fé sna fallaí aca le h-anaither 's le sgannra.
Beidh gach cloch is reacht aca caite thar a chéile
Beidh minstrí ar lár is a gcnámha briste brúite
'S ba bhinne leat an lá úd ná Ráiseanna Bh'l Áth' Úla

As published in Donal O'Sullivan,Songs of the Irish.Cork: Mercier, 1981 (first edition 1960)

Translations by Donal O'Sullivan

[would you have imagined the place name means 'the ford of of the apples'? Bh'l Áth' Úla sounds like 'Bla Hoola']

Literal translation

1.        I have a story to tell, and do not think it is a lie, That although we are long oppressed by the race of plunderes The foreing proctors will be forspent and powerless, Their standing and reputation gone, luckless and unfortunate, lacking food and drink and clothing. Spring to your feet and lift up yopur hearts, The tithes are overthrown without prospect of ever returning. We shall rout the Orangemen and achieve their expulsion, The ministers will be in tribulation, with their doors closed - And that day will be sweeter to you than the Races of Ballyhooly!

2.        At Gortroe our neighbours fell by orders to shoot, the bright Kingdom of Glory will be their abode for ever. The great God almighty will be there to grant us retribution, That they may be hanged by a rope or burnt to the bone. If the villains come unscathed from this ordeal, They will yet be dealt with, my grief! On the Day of Judgement, The blood of the faithful will be between heaven and their sight. The devil and his minions will carry them off with him - And that day will be sweeter to you than the Races of Ballyhooly!

3.        For three hundred years dirty James (John Bull) left our minds troubled, Sorrowful and bullied, without justice or rights, but with sweat on our cheeks, Our clergy saying Mass affrighted in the valleys, And their flocks going astray from them on eah Sunday morning. Now they are all in terror that their churches will be leveled, They have put props under the walls in their fear and alarm. Everyh single stone and ordinance of theirs shall be overturned, The ministers will be laid low, their bones bnruised and broken - And that day will be sweeter to you than the Races of Ballyhooly!

Poetic translation

A story I've to tell you, friends, and 'tis no false relation,
'Tis all about the thieving fiends that long oppressed this nation.
The proctors and their heresies will shortly be sent packing,
Their creed and doctrines all proved lies, their wines and victuals lacking.
For my news is this great matter, boys, for which your hearts are yearning,
The tithes we soon will scatter, without hope of their returning,
The Orangemen we'll batter, all their pleas for mercy spurning.
The ministers will lose what's theirs, their doors shut in their faces,
Be sure that day will be far more gay than the Ballyhooly races!

'Twas at Gortroe our neighbours died through shooting fell and gory,
The gates of heaven are opened wide to welcome them to glory.
Almightly God will not forget these men, for all their boasting,
On the gallows tree we'll see them yet, or in a furnace roasting.
If fire and gibbet they can cheat, for them there's no repentance,
They still must face the Judgement Seat and hear the dreadful sentence,
Our martyrs will their pleas defeat, they'll all of them be sent hence.
The devil then will seize these men and put them through their paces -
Be sure the day will be far more gay than the Ballyhooly Races!

Three centuries the foreign race has ground us 'neath the harrow;
The sweat aye running down our face in travail and in sorrow;
Our priests, proscribed, were forced to say their Mass in secret hollow,
Each Sunday and each holy-day, alas! where few could follow.
But the foreigners will tremble soon, their downfall is beginning,
They'll see their churches crumble soon, in spite of under-pinning,
Each stone of them will tumble soon, their steeples all sent spinning.
We'll finish with the ministers, of their work we'll leave no traces -
Be sure that day will be far more gay than the Ballyhooly races!

This is an anti-tithes song dating from about 1830
At the time, everybody had to pay tithes to the established church
The tithes were rigidly enforced, as O'Sullivan relates: ''In Skibbereen, for instance, the parson though he knew that the stricken people were living on seaweed and nettles, insisted on his tithes with an escort of police and yeomanry. The Catholics resisted and thirty of them were shot dead.''

Daniel O'Connell lead a passive resistance campaign against the tithes; ''when cattle, crops, furniture were seized by the proctors and offered at public auction, nobody would buy. The agitation persisted in spite of the savage Coercion Act of 1833, which gave power to prohibit meetings, to put districts under martial law and to impose a curfew; and it ended successfully with the passage in 1838 of an Act abolishing the tithe rent charge.''

The second verse of the song refers to Gortroe, where 'the massacre of Rathcormac' occurred on 18 Dec 1834 (Gortroe and Rathcormac are near Fermoy, Co Cork), when Rev Archdeacon William Ryder went to collect tithes of four pounds 16 shillings from the widow Ryan. He was accompanied by foot soldiers, dragoons and police. Against this armed force were 150 protestors.
''Some of these had placed carts across the laneway leading to the cottage, in order to block passage of the soldiers. The Riot Act was read without any provocation being offered, and Ryder then ordered the calvary to fire…The people who found themselves in the laneway and the small kitchen-garden had no chance of escaping, and nine of them were shot dead. The youngest victim was the widow's son, a lad of twenty. The soldiers then cleared the laneway, dragging the carts over the bodies of the dead and dying; and they seized four stacks of corn adjacent to the cottage in satisfaction of Ryder's demand for tithes. ''

These facts were given in sworn evidence at the coroner's inquest. Although a verdict of 'wilful murder' was returned, no action was taken against the murderers.

Ballyhooly is another town in the area. The title and metre of this song appears to be taken from an older song; it corresponds to a Jacobite poem by Henry MacAuliffe which is held in the archives of the Royal Irish Academy. On that manuscript it says that MacAuliffe composed the song in 1745 ''at a tent at the races of Ballyhooly''. O'Sullivan concludes, ''Hence it would seem that for a century before our anti-tithe song was written the Races of Ballyhooly were a synonym for jollity and fun.''

This song comes across as very sectarian. I can't imagine myself singing it at a session or house party, but it could be suitable for a thematic programme or stage performance, with the historical background explained.

I'd also be interested in seeing the lyrics of MacAuliffe's unpublished manuscript.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
From: MMario
Date: 13 Mar 03 - 02:23 PM

T:The Races of Ballyhooly /RÁISEANNA BHAILE ÁTHA ÚLA
z6z(E/2 C/2)|A,3/2 A,/2 A, B, C E (D/2 C/2) (B,/2 A,/2)|B,2B3/2 c/2 B2B (3(A/2 B/2) c/2|
w:Tá_ scéal ag-am le hinn-sint is_ ná_ smaoin-idh gur bréag é, Cé_ gur
d c B A (F/2 A3/2) E C|A,2A3/2 B/2 A2A (E/2 C/2)|
w:fad-a táim-id síos_ aig-e síol-rach na méir-leach Beidh_
A, A, A, B, (C E) (D/2 C/2) (B,/2 A,/2)|B,2B3/2 c/2 B2B (3(A/2B/2c/2)|
w:próc-ad-óir-í Galld_-a_ go_ fann-lag gan éif-eacht Gan__
d c B A F A E C|A, A, A B A2A|A3/2 B/2 c d (e c) B A|
w: chlú, gan mheas, gan séan, gan rath, gan bia, gan deoch, gan ead-ach.
(A3/2 B/2) c d e2e3/2 c/2|d c d e (f3/2 e/2) d c|
w:Preabh-aidh in bhur seas_-amh is árd_-uídh bhur n~inn-tinn, Tá'n
B2f f f2E2|A3/2 B/2 c d e c B A|
w:deach-ú leis a' bhfán_ is gan fail chas-ta choíche air,
(d/2 c/2 d/2) e/2 (f/2 e/2 d/2) c/2 B2B (3(E/4G/4B/4)|
w:Ruaig-fim-id na h~Ór-ange-men 'gus déan__-faim-id__ a ndíb-irt; Beidh__
d B c A (F A) E C|B,2B3/2 c/2 B2B (3A/2(B/2c/2)|
w:min-is-try fé bhrón_ is a ndóir-se 'ca dún-ta 'S ba_
d c B A (F A) E C|A, A, A B A2A
w:bhinn-e leat an lá_ úd ná Ráis-eann-a Bh'lÁth' Úl-a

gif forwarded from philippa - I would assume from source in above post.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
From: AmyLove
Date: 29 Jan 17 - 05:28 PM

I found several recordings of the tune:

The races at Ballyhooly, air / Liam O'Connor, fiddle

Peter Carberry & Padraig McGovern live

The Races at Ballyhooley

But I haven't found any recordings of anyone singing the song. Does anyone here know of any such recordings, in Irish or in English?

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
Date: 30 Jan 17 - 12:54 AM

The blank above went off half-cocked, I can't help with a recording but the Gaelic Journal of 1903 has more verses.

Tá scéal agam le hinnsint 's ná smaoinidh gur bréag é,
Gur fada atáimíd síos aige síolrach na sméirleach;
Prócadóirí Gallda go fann lag gan éifeacht,
Gan chlú gan mheas, gan séan gan rath, gan biadh gan deoch gan éadach;
Preabaidh 'nbhur seasamh agus árduighidh bhur n-intinn,
Tá na deachmhaidhthe ar lár gan fagháil chasta choidhche ortha;
Ruaigfimíd na hAráistigh is déanfaimíd a ndibirt;
Beidh ministrí fé bhrón is a ndoirse aca dúnta;
'S badh bhinne leath an lá soin 'na Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

Ar an nGort Ruadh do thuit ar gcomhursain le horduighthe láimhte;
Beidh Ríoghacht geal na Glóire go deóidh 'ca mar árus;
Beidh Dia mór na gcomhacht ann i gcóir go bhfuigheam sásamh,
Go gcrochtar iad le córda nó go ndóightear 'n-a gcneádhnaibh;
Má thighid na sméirligh saor abhaile ó'n gcúis seo
Beidh fuil na bhfíréan 'dir an spéir is a súile;
Beifear 'n-a gcóir fós mo bhrón-sa lá an chunntais,
Beidh an d-l 's a ghárda dá n-árdach chum siubhail leis;
'S badh bhinne leat an lá soin 'na Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

'S an lá úd ar an gCnocán is eadh bí an báire aca ar saothar;
Do chas an armáil is gan fagháil aca ar éan-rud;
Bí lucht na mbolg muar i mbuaidhirt is i ngéibhinn,
Is faid mo bhaise 'bhreill ar Ryder is ar Bhrazier;
Bhí an Barrach ann go calma i ngradam is i scóip mhóir
An Carrthach an fear Eagailseach is fearra i gClár Fódla;
Do labhradar go tathacach gan eagla gan spleádhchas;
Bhí míle hurá ins gach páirt de'n dúthaigh;
'S ba bhinne leat an lá soin 'ná Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

Féach thar n-ais ar Charraig Seac mara ndeárnathas an íospairt
Gur scriosadar na Laighnigh na cinn de sna Pílears;
Is iomdhó fear áluinn calma bhí fé ghlasaibh is i gcruadhtan
Go dtáinig Domhnall thar mór-mhuir go módhmharach dá bhfuascailt;
Bhí a n-aithreacha 's a máithreacha go cráidhte 's go buaidheartha
Gan súil filleadh abhaile leó gan crochadh nó transporting;
Níor bhain neachtar aca leó b'fhearr fhios aige ná Domhnall;
Do scaoil gach éinne abhaile aca thar n-ais ar a fhóidín duthchais;
'S badh bhinne leat an lá soin 'ná Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

Le trí chéad bliadhain d'fhág Séamus bréan ár n-aigne go buaidheartha,
Fé bhrón fé smacht, gan chóir gan cheart, acht allus le n-ár ngruadhnaibh;
Ár nEaglais ag léigheamh Áifrinn le hanfaithe i ngleanntaibh
'S ar dtréadtha ag dul ar strae aca gach éan-mhaidin Domhnaigh;
Anois tá eagla ar chách gur ar lár do bheidh a dteampuill;
Tá prapaí fé sna fallaí 'ca le hanfhaithe 's le scannradh;
Beidh gach cloch is reacht aca caithte thar a chéile;
Beidh ministrí ar lár is a gcnámhna briste brúighte;
'S badh bhinne leat an lá soin 'ná Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

Tabharfar chughainn Párlamint gan spleádhchas go hÉirinn;
Beidh teinteacha cnámh ar gach árd agus maol-chnoc;
Beigh Galla-phuic ar baill-chrith le heagla an lae úd;
Coinnighidh an tsíothcháin' a dhearbhráithreacha, 's ní baoghal díbh;
Déanaidh comhairle bhur nEaglaise go galánta deagh-iomchuir,
Tá Domhnall go seasmhach 's a ghárda i bhfeidhil chúil díbh;
Iomchuiridh sibh féin feasta go macánta 's go múinte,
'S tá bhur gceart le fagháil agaibh gan grán pléir' ná púdair;
'S badh bhinne leat an lá soin 'ná Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

Anois tá an téarma caithte 's do chuireamar gan éan-locht;
Tá Dia go maith, tá a chabhair ag teacht i gcoirteacha an tSáirséalaigh;
Tá an rí ceart so Domhnall ag tógaint ár bpáirte,
Líontar chughainn an bheóir chum go n-ólfaimíd a shláinte.
Ná bíodh éan-amhrus feasta oraibh a leabhar Phastorína;
Tá tairngreacht Naomh Seagháin gach éan-lá ag teacht i gcrích chughainn;
Tá feasta cead pléidhe againn i n-áitreabh ár sinsear;
Tá aighneas an scéil feasta againn 'n-ár bhfóidín dílis duthcais;
'S badh bhinne leat an lá soin 'ná Ráiseanna Bh'le Áth' Ubhla.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
From: Thompson
Date: 30 Jan 17 - 12:59 AM

Would a French Résistance song come across as very sectarian if it expressed a wish for the German occupiers similar to this?

Na h-úlla - the 'a' suffix in plurals is often pronounced 'aí', or in English orthography, 'ee', so it would be pronounced nahoolee.

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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Races of Ballyhooly (Gaeilge)
From: AmyLove
Date: 30 Jan 17 - 11:28 PM

More verses -- wonderful!

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