Author Topic: Add: Kitty from Coleraine


Posted - 12 Feb 05 - 10:09 am

As beautiful Kitty one morning was tripping
With a pitcher of milk from the fair of Coleraine
When she saw me she stumbled the pitcher it tumbled
And all the sweet buttermilk water'd the plain.
"Oh what shall I do now 'twas looking at you now,
Sure, sure such a pitcher I'll ne'er see again.
'Twas the pride of my dairy! Oh! Barney McCleary,
You're sent as a plague to the girls in Coleraine."

I sat down beside her and gently did chide her
That such a misfortune should give her such pain;
A kiss there I gave her and before I did leave her
She vowed for such pleasure she'd break it again.
'Twas hay-making season, I can't tell the reason,
Misfortune will never come singly 'tis plain.
For very soon after poor Kitty's disaster
Och! never a pitcher was whole in Coleraine.

Source: Singing Together, Autumn 1984, BBC Publications


From Ireland.

It is very easy to read sexual allusion into songs where it was not intended, but this one seems very plain to me. I wonder how it came to be included in a book of songs for schools?

Edited By dmcg - 12-Feb-2005 10:19:26 AM


Posted - 12 Feb 05 - 12:28 pm

This broadside of the song in the Bodleian Library is actually dated Apr 4th 1809


Malcolm Douglas
Posted - 12 Feb 05 - 07:14 pm

Alfred Moffat (Minstrelsy of Ireland, 4th edn, c.1919, 6-7) prints the song as As Beautiful Kitty (Kitty of Coleraine), with the usual attribution to Edward Lysaght. He notes, however

' "The authorship of this song has been erroneously attributed to Edward Lysaght" (O'Donoghue); it was issued early in the [19th] century by Kelly of Waterford as a chap-book and is to be found in many collections of Irish songs. The air, which has nothing in common with "Kitty of Coleraine; or, Paddy's Resource," to which Moore wrote his song, "Ill Omens," is printed in George Thompson's Irish Airs, vol. ii., O'Farrell's Pocket Companion, Bk. iv., Musical Cabinet, etc.'

A P Graves, The Irish Song Book (1894) includes the song as "anon", with a tentative date of "about 1790". He also includes songs by Lysaght (1763-1810). Kitty has also been attributed to Charles Dawson Shanly, but that's a non-starter; he wasn't born until 1811.

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