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A BATTLE OF BIRDS
great multitude of little Crowes (Corniculae) appeared in the Ayre, which fought as it were in a set Battaile, and skirmished so eagerly, killing many amongst themselves, that the Boores gathered some sacks full of them dead, and transported them unto the City. The yeere after, Anno. 1626. fell out a hard and sharpe fight, betwixt the Imperialists, and the Weinmarish Forces in this place" (L. Brinckmair, The Warnings of Germany, 1638, p. 25). Compare also No. 26, which deals with a much later battle of birds in France, and No. 25, in which the burning of Cork in 1622 is taken to be the calamity predicted in the ballad.
For another contemporary reference to the battle of the birds see the Court and Times of James I, 11, 302.
For the tune of Shore's Wife see Chappell's Popular Music, 1, 21 5; for Bonny Nell, see the same work, 11, 502.
To the tune of Shores wife. Or to the tune of Bonny Nell.
i MArke well, Gods wonderous workes, and see, what things therein declared be, Such things as may with trembling feare, fright all the world, the same to heare: for like to these, which heere I tell, no man aliue remembreth well.
2 The eight day of September last,
which made all Ireland much agast: Were seene (neere Corke) such flights of Birds,
whose numbers, cannot well by words, acounted be: for greater store, was neuer seene, nor knowne before.
3 The flights, so many legions seem'd,
as thousand thousands they were deem'd,