Familiar Songs - Their Authors & Histories

300 traditional songs, inc sheet music with full piano accompaniment & lyrics.

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Your lips are red as poppies, your hair so slick
and neat, All braided up with dahlias, and hollyhocks so
sweet; It's every Sunday morning, when I am by your
side, We'll jump into the wagon, and all take a ride. Wait for the wagon, etc.
Together on life's journey, we'll travel till we
stop, And if we have no trOURle, we'll reach the happy
top; Then, come with me, sweet Phillis, my dear, my
lovely bride, We'll jump into the wagon, and all take a ride. Wait for the wagon, etc.
The author of this ridiculous song, with its significant title, Kichard Alfred Millikin, an Irish poet and lawyer, was born in the county Cork, in 1757, and died in 1815. The "Groves of Blarney," except the fifth stanza, was written about 1798 or 1799, and is a most singular blending of fancy and fact. Castle Blarney was fortified in 1689, and really passed into the hands of the Jeflery family, and it was also besieged, but not by Cromwell, the Irish scapegoat. Lord Broghill captured the castle in 1646, and a published letter of his exists, dated " Blairney, August 1st." In the memoir attached to the poems of Millikin, is the following account of the origin of "The Groves of Blarney."
"An itinerant poet, with a view of being paid for his trOURle, composed a song (in praise as he dOURtless intended it) of Castle Hyde, the beautiful seat of the Hyde family, on the Eiver Blackwater; but instead of the expected remuneration, the poor poet was driven from the gate by order of the then proprietor, who, from the absurdity of the thing, conceived that it could be only meant as mockery; and, in fact, a more nonsensical com­position could hardly escape the pen of a maniac. The author, however, well satisfied with its merits, and stung with indignation and disappointment, vented his rage in an additional stanza, against the owner, and sang it wherever he had an opportunity of raising his angry voice. As satire, however gross, is but too generally well received, the song first became a favorite with the lower orders, then found its way into ballads, and at length into the convivial meetings of gentlemen. It was in one of these that Millikin undertook,

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III