Manual The Irish Match : (Tis a fine Tail)

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On this page you can journey through the flora of the hedgerow. The fruits, herbs, and flowers. The young leaves of the hawthorn can be eaten in salad, or made into an infusion to help a weak heart. The fruit of the bramble blackberry can be eaten and its leaves made into a tasty tea. The uses of the various plants are many and here you may find something of interest. Coinnle Corra. Constancy and everlasting love. Believed to call the fairies when rung, and thought to be unlucky to walk through a mass of bluebells, because it was full of spells. It is also considered an unlucky flower to pick or bring into the house.

The Latin name for this flower is Endymion who was the lover of the moon Goddess, Selene. The goddess put Endymion into an eternal sleep, so she alone could enjoy his beauty. Bluebells were said by herbalists to help prevent nightmares, and used as a remedy against leprosy, spider-bites and tuberculosis, but the bluebell is poisonous. Noted for the gummy sap from its bulbs, which made it useful as a starch substitute. It was also used as glue for bookbinding as it is so toxic it stops certain insects from attacking the binding and setting the tail feathers on arrows.

When you consider the potentially fatal results of faulty wiring on a missile I think you will agree, its use is warrented. The bulbs are extremely toxic and this toxicity may be the origin of the superstitious belief that anyone who wanders into a ring of bluebells will fall under fairy enchantment and soon after die. Where Bluebells are found in hedgerows it may indicate an ancient hedge as their presence is indicative of ancient woodland. The Hawthorn. Sceach Gheal. Classified in early Irish law as an Aithig fedo or Commoner of the Wood.

In Irish it is Sceach Gael but we also know it as the Faerie Tree for it is said to guard the entrance to the faerie realm and it is still considered bad luck to harm one. There are many superstitions surrounding the Hawthorn and here are just a few of them: During birth if a calf is born prematurely hanging its afterbirth on a Hawthorn tree was said to magically protect it and give it quick growth one of the other names given to the Hawthorn is Quickset as it will take very easily as a cutting This could be magic by association?

The Hawthorn has long been associated with fertility and at Beltaine May 1st young women would take a sprig of blossom and keep it close as a way of attracting a husband. On the morning of Beltaine dawn , men and women would bathe in the morning dew of the Hawthorn blossom to increase wealth, health, luck, good fortune, and beauty. Women would become more beautiful and men by washing their hands in the dew would become skilled craftsmen.

Today it is still practiced and it is one of the woods used in the Hand fastening ritual as it will ensure a lasting relationship. The Hawthorn is also known as a tree of protection and for this reason it will be found growing near a house. It will offer protection from storm and lightning. On Beltaine it is the custom here in Ireland to hang strips of cloth or ribbons on a Hawthorn especially if it grows near a well in order to make a wish the wishing tree of legend.

It is also the custom to hang strips of coloured cloth from the branches, blue for health, red or pink for love, green or gold for prosperity etc. These will then be used as bindings in the hand fastening. You may also use discarded pieces of wood in order to make wands or ritual tools but NEVER cut the wood from the tree. It has an immense amount of folklore attached to it in Ireland. The young leaves and flower buds are used as both a food eaten in spring salads, and as a medicine.

Medicinally, an infusion is prepared which has been shown to be valuable in improving the heartbeat rate and strength, especially in heart failure, and in balancing the blood pressure; it also helps with irregular heartbeats and improves the peripheral circulation, helping with conditions such as Reynaud's and with poor memory since it improves the circulation to the brain.

The bioflavonoids relax and dilate the arteries and blood vessels thereby relieving angina. The bioflavonoids and proanthocyanins are also valuable antioxidants which help repair and prevent tissue damage, especially in the blood vessels. Hawthorn also helps to relieve anxiety and is traditionally thought to mend broken hearts, both emotionally and physically.

The berries are gathered in the autumn and have similar medicinal properties — they can be used fresh or dried in a decoction or infused in brandy to make a heart tonic for the winter months. For culinary use the berries are traditionally gather after the first frost which converts some of the starches to sugars and makes the berries more palatable. Berries are used as an ingredient in hedgerow wine, or to make haw jelly as an accompaniment to wild game. The berries can also be mashed, removing the skin and seeds, and used to make a fruit leather as a way of storing them.

Thomas the Rhymer, the famous thirteenth century Scottish mystic and poet, once met the Fairy Queen by a hawthorn bush from which a cuckoo was calling. She led him into the Fairy Underworld for a brief sojourn, but upon re-emerging into the world of mortals he found he had been absent for seven years. The site of Westminster Abbey was once called Thorney Island after the sacred stand ofthorn trees there. Hawthorn is at its most prominent in the landscape when it blossoms during the month of May, and probably the most popular of its many vernacular names is the May-tree.

As such, it is the only plant which is named after the month in which it blooms. It has many associations with May Day festivities. Though the tree now flowers around the middle of the month, it flowered much nearer the beginning of the month, before the introduction of the Gregorian calendar in The blossoms were used for garlands, and large leafy branches were cut, set in the ground outside houses as so-called May bushes and decorated with local wildflowers.

Using the blossoms for decorations outside was allowed, but there was a very strong taboo against bringing hawthorn into the house. Across Ireland there was the belief that bringing hawthorn blossom into the house would be followed by illness and death, and there were many instances of hapless children being scolded by adults for innocently decorating the home.

Mediaeval country folk also asserted that the smell of hawthorn blossom was just like the smell of death.

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Botanists later discovered that the chemical trimethylamine present in hawthorn blossom is also one of the first chemicals formed in decaying animal tissue. It has also been suggested that some of the hawthorn Crataegus monogyna folklore may have originated for the related woodland hawthorn Crataegus laevigata which may well have been commoner during the early Middle Ages, when a lot of plant folklore was evolving.

In some areas of Ireland small gifts of food and drink would be left under the tree for the fairies presents under the tree, sound familiar? The Hawthorn has many uses , the young leaves are eaten and were commonly referred to as bread and cheese, the blossom and berries were made into wines and jellies, and decoctions of the flowers and leaves were used to stabilise blood pressure. The strong, close-grained wood was used for carving, and for making tool handles and other small household items.

Probably its greatest practical use to people has been as hedging. In Ireland it was believed that if one of your neighbours used a whitethorn hawthorn stick to herd cattle then he was up to no good. It was also planted around the house and sheds to keep away witches. In the 19th century, chemists isolated salicylic acid from Meadowsweet. The acid was a disinfectant so it not only made rooms smell better but helped the fight against bacteria. It was a painkiller and anti-inflammatory but hard on the stomach. Only after it was synthesised did it become an acceptable candidate for mass production and sold in tablet form as 'aspirin' — 'a' for acetyl and ' —spirin' for Spirea, the original botanical name for Meadowsweet.

With a heavy fragrance. The flower heads are frequently visited by bees attracted by the heavy scent which can be so evocative of summer days in the countryside. In spite of this fragrance, the flowers produce no nectar. Insects, however, don't realise this but their visits serve to fertilise the plants which are heavy with pollen. A peculiarity of this flower is that the scent of the leaves is quite different from that of the flowers, the leaves having a heavy almond-like aroma whereas the flowers have a strong sweet smell.

Meadowsweet was historically used to flavour mead and it was because of this that one of its other names is Mead Wort. Cooks used the herb to flavour beers, meads and wines and added it to soups for an interesting almond flavour. The fresh leaves can be used to flavour sorbets and fruit salads. Infuse the flower to make a mild diuretic tea, let it steep to bring out the salicylic acid before serving. As a cosmetic, it was soaked in rainwater and used as astringent and skin conditioner.

It was also known as Bridewort because it was strewn on the ground at handfastings for the bride to walk on wort is an old word that means herb or root and it was also used in wedding posies and bridal bouquets. It is also associated with death as the scent of its flowers was said to induce a sleep that was deep and fatal.

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However in County Galway it was believed that if a person was wasting away because of faerie influence then putting some meadowsweet under the bed ensured that they would be cured by the morning. Legend says that meadowsweet was given its fragrance by the Land Goddess Aine. In some places the flowers were dried and smoked in a pipe probably less damaging than tobacco. Its roots produce a black dye and its leaves a blue pigment and yellow is obtained from the top of the plant all of which were used by the Celts.

In Ireland it was used to scour milk vessels. The Blackthorn is depicted in many fairytales throughout Europe as a tree of ill omen. Called Straif in the Ogham, this tree has the most sinister reputation in Celtic tree lore. To Witches, it often represents the dark side of the Craft.

The tree is linked with warfare, wounding and death, associated with the Cailleach - the Crone of Death, and the Irish Morrigan. Winter begins when the Cailleach also the Goddess of Winter strikes the ground with her Blackthorn staff. Although it is made from Oak, Ash or Holly it is usually made from Blackthorn, this is a hard, strong, plentiful wood that also has a very convenient knob that is formed from the root of the shrub.

Its bark is especially tough and the wood was cured by burying it in a dung heap or smearing it with butter then placing it up the chimney. Where Blackthorn grows near its sister plant the Hawthorn, the site is especially magical. The ashes were used to fertilize the fields. The Blackthorn has a long and often sinister history, associated with witchcraft and murder, but it is also associated with the concept of the cycle of life and death and protection not to mention its practical physical uses.

It is often associated with darkness, winter, and the waning or dark moon, a particularly cold spring is referred to as 'a Blackthorn winter'. The Blackthorn is also seen as a protective tree and representative of the endless cycle of life and death.

The Irish Match: ('Tis a Fine Tail)

For all its deadly associations the blossoms were used in ancient fertility rites as well as being hung in the bedchamber of a bride on her wedding night. The tree itself is said to be protected by the fairy folk. It is considered a fairy tree and is protected by the Lunantishee, a type of fairy that inhabits it.

Blackthorn wood is the traditional wood for walking sticks due to its durability and rich colour when polished. It has long been favoured by farmers along with the Hawthorn as a hedging shrub. The flowers appear before the leaves in the spring, heralding the start of that season. They are a diuretic and depurative or blood purifier , useful as a spring cleansing tonic and for skin conditions such as acne.

The bark is used as an astringent and to treat fever and is also gathered in the spring. The leaves are also astringent and diuretic. The unripe fruit is used to treat acne. There is mention of combining the leaves, bark, fruits and flowers together for certain traditional cures; presumably some of these would be in dried form. The ripe fruit is traditionally gathered after the first frost, which sweetens the taste. They are used to prepare sloe gin, or as a winter fruit to add to pies and jams or to brew wine.

The old name Woodbine describes the twisting, binding nature of the honeysuckle through the hedgerows. It was believed that if honeysuckle grew around the entrance to the home it prevented a witch from entering. In other places it's believed that grown around the doors it will bring good luck. If it grows well in your garden, then you will be protected from evil.

In Ireland honeysuckle was believed to have a power against bad spirits, and it was used in a drink to cure the effects of the evil eye. Bringing the flowers into the house will bring money with them. Honeysuckle has long been a symbol of fidelity and affection. Those who wear honeysuckle flowers are said to be able to dream of their true love.


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Its clinging nature in the language of flowers symbolises, 'we are united in love,' and emphasis's the bond of devotion and affection between two people. It was also believed that if the blooms were brought into the house then a wedding would follow within a year. The wood has been used to make walking sticks because of its nature to grow around and entwine saplings. The dried flowers are used for adding to pot-pourri, herb pillows and floral waters.

Also, scented cosmetics are made from the fresh flowers. A less known fact about the honeysuckle family is that Lonicera tatarica Tatarian honeysuckle, a leggy bush honeysuckle with sweet scented pink flowers, is used as a substitute for catnip. The wood contains nepetalactone which is the active ingredient found in catnip. Gerard had the flowers steeped in oil down as being good to help warm and soothe the body that is very cold.

Matthew Robinson in his New Family Herbal shared Culpeper's view that honeysuckle leaves helped the spleen and liver. Matthew also advocated that the flowers are boiled in water and used as a poultice with a little oil added as a cure for hard swellings and impostumes abscesses. The leaves and flowers of the honeysuckle are rich in salicylic acid, so may be used to relieve headaches, colds, flu, fever, aches, pains, arthritis and rheumatism. The leaves have anti-inflammatory properties and contain anti-biotics active against staphylococci and coli bacilli.

Honeysuckle flowers and flower buds are used in various infusions and tinctures to treat coughs, catarrh, asthma, headaches and food poisoning. It was also linked by some medieval scholars with the ancient Irish Ogham alphabet. The Ivy. In Irish folk medicine, the main use of ivy has been in the treatment of corns. In Ireland, burns and scalds were also treated with an ointment made from the boiled leaves and fat and it was also used to stop bleeding and reduce inflammation. Like many other evergreens, it symbolizes the concept of eternity; a belief in everlasting life and resurrection after death.

Because it is often found growing on dead and decayed trees, it came to represent the immortal soul —which lives on even after the body has returned to the earth. Yet at the same time, because it was often found in sites of death including cemeteries and old tombstones it was also viewed as an emblem of mortality. Like the holly, the ivy is one of the plants found in the Celtic Tree Calendar, where it is known as Gort. Along came a man by the name of Charlie Mops, and he invented a wonderful drink and he made it out of hops.

Lord bless Charlie Mops, the man who invented beer beer beer tiddly beer beer beer. A barrel of malt, a bushel of hops, you stir it around with a stick, the kind of lubrication to make your engine tick. Its only eight pence hapenny and one and six in tax, 1 2 3 4 5. He must have been an admiral a sultan or a king, and to his praises we shall always sing. What shall we do with a drunken sailor, What shall we do with a drunken sailor, What shall we do with a drunken sailor, Early in the morning?


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I'm a weaver a Calton Weaver, I'm a rash and a rovin' blade I've got silver in my pocket and I'll follow the roving trade. The more I kissed her the more I loved her, The more I kissed her the more she smiled, Soon I forgot my mother's teaching, Nancy soon had me beguiled. So I'll go back to the Calton weavin' I'll surely make the shuttles fly, I'll make more at the Calton weavin' Than ever I did with the rovin' trade.

As I was going over the far famed Kerry mountains I met with captain Farrell and his money he was counting. I first produced my pistol, and then produced my rapier. Said stand and deliver, for I am a bold deceiver,. I counted out his money, and it made a pretty penny. I put it in my pocket and I took it home to Jenny. She said and she swore, that she never would deceive me, but the devil take the women, for they never can be easy. I went into my chamber, all for to take a slumber, I dreamt of gold and jewels and for sure it was no wonder.

But Jenny took my charges and she filled them up with water, Then sent for captain Farrel to be ready for the slaughter. It was early in the morning, as I rose up for travel, The guards were all around me and likewise captain Farrel. Now some men take delight in the drinking and the roving, But others take delight in the gambling and the smoking. But I take delight in the juice of the barley, And courting pretty fair maids in the morning bright and early. Johnny awoke with an ache in his head.

Bad dreams had made him ill. And he grumbled as he dressed despite his duress As he made his way to the mill. Oh he never wanted to work that day, But the foreman had himself clear. It was a chilly morning, went straight to his bones Oh, he wished that he had him some ale. Just one fine glass of stout Guiness Would hold him till the end of the trail. Well, the door swung open, a cold wind blew in. And there stood a man unafraid. He called for a beer.

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They realized when near. It was Johnny come back from the grave. As I roved by the dockside one evening so fair To view the salt waters and take in the salt air I heard an old fisherman singing a song Oh, take me away boys me time is not long. Now Fiddler's Green is a place I've heard tell Where the fishermen go if they don't go to hell Where the weather is fair and the dolphins do play And the cold coast of Greenland is far, far away.

Now when you're in dock and the long trip is through There's pubs and there's clubs and there's lassies there too And the girls are all pretty and the beer is all free And there's bottles of rum growing on every tree. Where the skies are all clear and there's never a gail And the fish jump on board with one swish on their tail Where you lie at your leisure, there's no work to do And the skipper's below making tea for the crew. Now I don't want a harp nor a halo, not me Just give me a breeze and a good rolling sea I'll play me old squeeze-box as we sail along With the wind in the riggin to sing me a song.

I've been a wild rover for many a year, And I spent all my money on whiskey and beer, But now I've returned with gold in great store, And I never will play the wild rover no more. I went down to an ale house I used to frequent, And I told the landlady my money was spent. Such custom like yours I could have any day. I'll go home to my parents, confess what I've done, And I'll ask them to pardon their prodigal son. And if they caress me as oft times before, I never will play the wild rover no more!

Tim Finnegan lived in Walkin Street, A gentle Irishman mighty odd He had a brogue both rich and sweet, An' to rise in the world he carried a hod You see he'd a sort of a tipplers way but for the love for the liquor poor Tim was born To help him on his way each day, he'd a drop of the craythur every morn. One morning Tim got rather full, his head felt heavy which made him shake Fell from a ladder and he broke his skull, and they carried him home his corpse to wake Rolled him up in a nice clean sheet, and laid him out upon the bed A bottle of whiskey at his feet and a barrel of porter at his head.

O, why did you die? Mickey Maloney ducked his head when a bucket of whiskey flew at him It missed, and falling on the bed, the liquor scattered over Tim Now the spirits new life gave the corpse, my joy! Tim jumped like a Trojan from the bed Cryin will ye walup each girl and boy, t'underin' Jaysus, do ye think I'm dead? This essay is prompted by consideration of some lines from Isaiah that begin at Verse 11 with "Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drinke, that continue until night, till wine inflame them.

The day being come that Sodom and Gomorrah must be destroy'd, the Angels in the top of the morning hasten Lot to come forth, and whilst he lingereth they lay hold on his hands, and the hands of his Wife and Daughters, and the Lord being merciful unto them bring them forth, bidding him flee to the Mountain, and escape for his life, and not look back, lest he should be destroyed, which his Wife offering notwithstanding the warning to do, was turned into a Pillar of Salt; Here "the top of the morning" again means "the beginning of the day"—although it is not clear from the context whether this is synonymous with "dawn" or some other marker of the earliest hour of the day.

First , Christ began early to work for God. He took the morning of his life, the very top of the morning to work for God. How is it said he to his Parents when he was but a child of about twelve years that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Fathers business? Reader, if the morning of thy life be not gone, oh devote it to the work of God, as Christ did. If it be, ply thy work the closer in the afternoon of thy life. If a man have any great and necessary business to do, it's good doing in the morning; afterwards a hurry of business and diversion comes on.

In this example, "the top of the morning" is used metaphorically to mean "the very earliest active stage"—here, evidently, the childhood of Jesus. This Tree [the 'Lime-tree'] is next the Platanus hereafter mentioned, of all other the most proper and beautiful for Walks, as producing an upright Body, smooth and even Bark, ample Leaf, sweet Blossom, and a goodly shade at the distance of eighteen or twenty Foot, their heads topped at at about five or eight Foot high : but if they are suffered to mount without check, they become a very straight and tall Tree in a little time, especially if thy grow near together, they afford a very pleasant dark shade, and perfume the Air in the Months of June and July with their fragrant blossom, and entertain a mellifluous Army of Bees, from the top of the morning , till the cool and dark evening compels their return.

The sense of the phrase here is again "the earliest stage of the day, presumably the morning counterpart of "the cool and dark evening. From these early instances it appears that "the top of the morning" was a recognized locution for the earliest period of the day—either dawn or the grayness before it—by Whether "top of the morning to you" arose as a salutation between people meeting at the earliest period of the day or whether it arose independently of that relatively narrow stretch of time and always used "top" in the sense of "best" rather than "beginning" I can't say with confidence.

In the example from Theodore Cyphon , the title character has escaped from a ship anchored offshore of Sheerness during the night, walked along the shore until he reached a pier with a boat tethered to it, bargained with the boatman to take him across to the Essex mainland, disembarked and adopted the guise of a peasant, and "proceeded nearly nine miles [on the common road] when I was overtaken by four sturdy men. This suggests that fairly early in its existence as a salutation, "the top of the morning" did not have a close connection to the break of day. The time of this great man's birth, according as he gave it himself, was on St.

Mark's day, in the year , summo mane , at Huntingdon, whose latitudw is 52 degrees and a few minutes ; and this is the estimate time given. John Partridge is the seventeenth-century astrologer and almanac writer best known for having incited Jonathan Swift in the guise of Isaac Bickerstaff to predict the death of "A cobbler, starmonger, and quack" that is, Partridge himself on March 29, In the event, Partridge lived another six or seven years; but Bickerstaff asserted first that Partridge's assertion on March 30, that he was still alive was a lie, and subsequently that the fact that Partridge was alive after March 29 was no proof that he hadn't, after all, been dead at least temporarily on the 29th.

For present purposes, the interesting element of Partridge's comments excerpted above is that it argues that "top of the morning" refers not to dawn but to the period soon after midnight of a new day. I have found no support elsewhere for this interpretation of the expression. My previous answer focused on what might be called the prehistory of "top of the morning"—the period between about and about when the expression was used descriptively rather than as a salutation.

This answer instead looks at published instances where "top of the morning" is used as a greeting or pleasantry. In particular, I want to look at instances where the expression is put in the mouths of Irish characters and instances where it is attributed to non-Irish characters. The starting point for such usage remains George Walker, Theodore Cyphon: Or, The Benevolent Jew —meaning that a century of silence separates the last descriptive instance of "top of the morning" John Partridge in from the first welcoming instance George Walker in After the Theodore Cyphon instance of "the top of the morning to you" from , the next two Google Books matches for the phrase used as a salutation are from the works of Walter Scott.

These appear in books published in and , as follows. From Guy Mannering , spoken by a ship's captain named Dirk Hatternick:. The fellow's cloudy visage cleared up. Hatternick evidently understands Gypsy cant, but his name is vaguely Dutch and Scott describes him as having "somewhat of a foreign accent, though speaking perfectly good English.

As our traveller set out early in the ensuing morning to prosecute her journey, and was in the act of leaving the inn-yard, Dick Ostler, who either had risen early or neglected to go to bed, either circumstance being equally incident to his calling, hollowed out after her, " The top of the morning to you , Moggie. Have a care o' Gunnerby Hill, young one. Robin Hood's dead and gwone, but there be takers yet in the vale of the bever. At length exclaiming, "Shipmate, ho!

The dissimilarity between the manners of the Borderer, and the old courtier-like appearance of his dress, was so evident as to strike all beholders with admiration. On entering the room, he advanced to the ladies, and in his usual hasty manner cried out, "Ah! Mistress Bradshaw! Miss Esther! Clapperton, an American:. And so you have already encountered the keen wits of the mad poet of Hopewell? I have perceived you and him yard-arm and yard-arm for the last two glasses, and considered it high time to run down to your assistance. While the Court was assembling, I took a stroll round the decks, and had not gone far when I was accosted by Joe Green, one of the delegates of the ship, with a familiar slap on the shoulder, coupled with the usual salutation of,—'Aha, matey!

The top of the morning to you , Mr. Editor: here I am in the heart of Leicestershire. All the saddlers, livery-stable-keepers, innkeepers, lodging-house-keepers, and other keepers, are expecting to make a fortune by the emigration of that great fox-hound keeper Lord Southampton, from Quorndon Hall to this ancient and independent borough Lee — The top of the morning to you , good woman. Can you give a soldier a draught of milk? This line is spoken by the book's title character, Tom Cringle, a young Englishman in the British Navy.

I caught a glimpse of you on the hill yonder-I knew you both, two miles off; and so, having a word or two to say to you, Luke Bradley, before I leave this part of the country, I put Bess to it, and she soon brought me within hail. From W. Neale, Will Watch. From the Auto-Biography of a British Officer , volume 2 :. The sun was up some hours, before Bradshaw left his room; when he did, it was noiselessly, so as not to disturb Selman. These examples stretch from to at which point I cut off my search for examples.

A disproportionate number involve people who have worked aboard ships, but there is also significant representation of the Scottish-English Border and the United States. None of the characters in these examples show any sign of intentionally or accidentally slipping into Irish speech patterns in any other respect, which suggests that readers in the period from through did not assume that saying "the top of the morning to you" automatically marked the speaker as being Irish. In gathering this group of examples, I have tried to keep track of whether the author was Irish and whether the piece was published in Ireland.

Here is how the opening of the song is presented in The Hibernian Cabinet :. A favorite comic Duet sung by Mr. Rose and Mrs. Barrett, and again in The Shamrock; A Collection of Irish Songs published in Glasgow in , a volume notable for the editor's explicit acknowledgment that Irish comic songs tended to be "written by persons who for the most part imagined, that to dress a flat contradiction in rhyme was to make a comic Irish song"; that is, they often involved caricatures of Irish speech by non-Irish writers.

Still it is noteworthy that this popular song antedates all but the Theodore Cyphon instance of "top of the morning to you" and appears in the context of purported Irish idiom. The top of the morning to yees , my darlings! My name's Mr. Terence O'Mulligan, Esquire, and may I never be after seeing that jewel of a place, sweet Tipperary, never no more, if I arent after feeling the highest felicity in addressing your honours, all three both together; for ye look as rosy, be my hod! As Darby Croney was perambulating Water-street, one misty morning, in search of work and a dram, he saw at a distance his friend, Michael Fowler, in seeming difficulty with Jenny, his high-blodded plodder—high in bone, I would rather say, than in flesh or in blood.

O'Rourke," replied the eagle, in very excellent Irish; "I hope Mrs. And more betoken, tell her that poor Shamus [Dempsy] quits her in her trouble, with more love from the heart out, than he had for her the first day they come together ; and 'ill come back to her, at any rate, sooner or later, richer or poorer, or as bare as he went—and maybe not so bare either—only God knows. And so the top o' the morning to you , Noreen, and don't let her want the mouthful of praties while I'm on my travels; for this," added Shamus, as he bounded off, to the consternation of old Noreen,—"this is the very morning, and the very minute that, if I mind the dhrame at all at all, I ought to mind it;—ay, without ever turning back to get a look from her, that 'ud kill the heart in my body entirely.

The Banims had ambitions to produce serious Irish literature and would have been in a position to know whether Irish country folk in the s and s commonly used the expression "the top of the morning to you. Amid this state of affairs [a serious drought in Kerry], as Mr.

Lynch and myself were enjoying the luxurious shade of the oak wood a decent elderly man was accosted by that gentleman [Mr. Lynch], with "Good morrow, Daniel. This instance is striking because it is presented as a reminiscence about a particular day, and the old man's greeting is mentioned only because he goes on to tell Lynch and Croker a folktale about how God made three ears of corn grow out of a griddle-cake. But the Presbytarian got the cleanest fall of all. Where do you think he fell? I suppose, now, you think he fell on his head, or his arm.

No such thing—he fell upon the ground. And what do you think he did when he got there? Nivir a single thing to swear by, except lie like a drunken beast on the earth. The top of the morning to you , Molly Doyle—I hope your early rising will do you no harm. God speed ye.