Tuesday 27 September 2016

The three most popular 1916 ballads

Published 21/05/2015 | 02:30

THE BALLAD OF JAMES CONNOLLY

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Perhaps the most well-known and stirring song which commemorates the events of the 1916 Rising. Connolly's execution while tied to a chair in Kilmainham Gaol is emotionally recalled.

THE FOGGY DEW

Written in 1919 by Canon Charles O'Neill, a parish priest of Kilcoo and later in Newcastle, Co Down. The hard-hitting song reflects the thoughts of Irish nationalists who believed Irishmen who fought for Britain during WWI should have stayed at home and fought for Irish independence. O'Neill sums up this feeling in the lines: "Twas far better to die 'neath an Irish sky, Than at Suvla or Sud el Bar".

GRACE

Despite being penned as recently as 1985 by Sean and Frank O'Meara, this ballad captures the human cost of the Rising as lovers Grace Gifford and Joseph Plunkett marry just hours before his execution. Made famous by the recently departed Jim McCann.

Irish Independent

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