Irish Song: from its earliest beginnings to c.1820: an indicative bibliography

This bibliography contains entries for studies of Irish song pre-1820, particularly studies which address musicological elements of song. A number of sub-sections have been devised for ease of use, but cross-referencing between sections will also be important for those wishing to pursue all published work in a chosen topic.

This bibliography does not include collections or anthologies of song, except where the critical apparatus of that anthology (in the form of an introduction or notes) constitutes in itself a valuable resource for the study of Irish song. It also excludes extensive work on Irish poetry and on Irish music which does not take song as a specific focus.


Barry, Phillips. ‘Irish Folk-Song’ in The Critics and the Ballad (1961), ed. Coffin (Carbondale and London, 1973), pp.59-76.

Blankenhorn, Virginia. Irish Song-Craft and Metrical Practice Since 1600 (Lewiston, NY, and Lampeter, 2003).

___________ . ‘Observations on the Performance of Irish Syllabic Verse’, in Studia Celtica 44 (2010): 135-154.

Breatnach, Pádraig A.’Irish Narrative Poetry after 1200 A.D.’, Studia Hibernica, 22-23 (1982-83): 7-20.

___________ .‘Form and Continuity in Later Irish Verse Tradition’, Éirú, 44 (1993): 125-38.

Breathnach, R.A., ‘A Musical Link between Dán and Amhráin’, Ceol 4.2 (1981): 102-09.

Breatnach, Pádraig A. ‘Múnlaí Véarsaíocht Rithimiúil na Nua-Ghaeilge’, Folia Gadelica, ed. Pádraig de Brún, et al. (Cork, 1983), pp.54-71.

Clune, Anne, ed. Dear far-voiced veteran: essays in honour of Tom Munnelly (Miltown Malbay, 2007).

Croker, T. Crofton. The Popular Songs of Ireland (London, 1886).

Dowling, Martin. Traditional Music and Irish Society: Historical Perspectives (Farnham, 2014).

Fleischmann, Aloys. Sources of Irish Traditional Music c1600-1855: An Annotated Catalogue of Prints and Manuscripts 1583-1855, 2 vols. (New York, 1998).

Flood, W.H. Grattan. A History of Irish Music (Dublin, 1905).

Gillies, William. ‘Music and Gaelic Strict-metre Poetry’, Studia Celtica 44 (2010): 111-134.

Joyce, P.W. Old Irish Folk Music and Songs (London, New York and Dublin, 1909).

Mac Grianna, Seán Bán. Ceoltaí agus Seanchas, ed. Ióseph Ó Searcaigh (Rann na Feirste, 1976).

Moulden, John. ‘What Did We Sing before There Were Folk Songs?’ in Dear Far-Voiced Veteran: Essays in Honour or Tom Munnelly, ed. Clune (Miltown Malbay, 2007).

O'Boyle, Sean (Ó Baoill, Seán). The Irish Song Tradition (Dublin, 1976).

___________ . ‘Songs in Irish Gaelic’ in Folksongs of Britain and Ireland (1975), ed. Kennedy (London and New York, 1984), pp.71-78.

Ó Lochlainn, Colm. Songwriters of Ireland in the English Tongue (Dublin, 1967).

Ó Madagáin, Breand in. ‘Irish Vocal Music’, in The Celtic Consciousness, ed. O’Driscoll (New York, 1982), pp.311-32.

___________ . ‘Functions of Irish Music’, Béaloideas 53 (1985), 130-216.

___________ . ‘Coibhneas na Filíochta les an gCeol, 1700-1900’, Saoi na hÉigse: Aistí in Ómós do Sheán Ó Tuama, ed. Riggs et al. (Dublin, 2000), pp.83-104.

O’Sullivan, Donal. Songs of the Irish (Dublin, 1960).

___________ . Irish Folk Music, Song and Dance (Cork, 1974).

Shields, Hugh. ‘The Proper Words: A Discussion on Folk Song and Literary Poetry’, Irish University Review 5 (1975): 274-91.

___________ . ‘Collecting Songs “by Hand,” 1954-1966’, Irish Folk Music Studies: Éigse Cheol Tíre, 5-6 (1986): 61-76.

___________ . ‘Printed Aids to Folk Singing, 1700-1900’ in The Origins of Popular Literacy in Ireland, eds. Daly and Dickson (Dublin, 1990), pp.139-52.

___________ . Narrative Singing in Ireland: Lays, Ballads, Come-all-yes and other Songs (Dublin, 1993).

White, Harry and Barra Boydell, eds. The Encyclopaedia of Music in Ireland, 2 vols. (Dublin, 2013).

Songs of particular places

Casey, Sara G. ‘Glendalough: Liturgy and Music’, Glendalough: City of God, ed. Doherty, Doran and Kelly (Dublin, 2011).

Fleischmann, Aloys and Ryta Gleeson, ‘Music in Ancient Munster and Monastic Cork’, Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society, 70 (1965): 79-98.

Gunn, Douglas. ‘Music in 18th-Century Cork’, The Journal of Music in Ireland 3: 6 (Sept/Oct 2003).

Lawrence, Frank. ‘The Lismore Gradual - music and liturgy in 12th century Lismore’ in International Eucharistic Congress 2012 – Dublin, eds. Leahy and Ryan (Dublin, 2012).

Ní Uallacháin, Pádraigín. A Hidden Ulster: People, Songs, and Traditions of Oriel (Dublin, 2003).

___________ . ‘A Drogheda List of Melodies’, Dear Far-Voiced Veteran. Essays in Honour of Tom Munnelly, ed. Clune (Miltown Malbay, 2007), pp.161-190.

Ó Ceallaigh, Proinsias. ‘The Tunes of the Munster Poets (II)’, Ceol 1.1 (Summer, 1963): 11-13; and Ceol 1.2 (Autumn, 1963): 23-24.

Ó Laoire, Lillis. On a Rock in the Middle of the Ocean: Songs and Singers, Tory Island, Ireland (2005; Indreabhán, Conamara, 2007).

Ó Madagáin, Breand n. ‘Limerick’s Heritage of Irish Song’, North Munster Antiquarian Journal 28 (1986): 77-102.

Shields, Hugh. ‘Singing Traditions in a Bilingual Parish’, Northwest Ireland Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council 3 (1970): 109-119.

___________ . Shamrock, Rose, and Thistle: Folk Singing in North Derry (Belfast, 1981).

Shields, Hugh, ed. Old Dublin Songs (Dublin, 1988).

The Keen / The Lament

(see also ‘Caoindeadh Airt Uí Laoghaire’ below)

Breatnach, Pádraig A. ‘Marbhna Aodha Ruaidh Uí Dhomhnaill’, Éigse 15.1 (Summer, 1973): 31-50.

Croker, T. Crofton. The Keen of the South of Ireland (1844; New York, 1965).

De Brún, Pádraig. ‘Caoine ar Mhac Fínín Duibh’, Éigse 13.3 (Summer, 1970): 221-224.

De Noraidh, Liam. Ceol ón Mumhain (Baile Átha Cliath, 1965).

Lysaght, Patricia. ‘Caoineadh os Cionn Coirp: The Lament for the Dead in Ireland’, Folklore 108 (1997): 65-82.

Ó Coileáin, Seán. ‘The Irish Lament: An Oral Genre’, Studia Hibernica 24 (1984-1988): 97-117.

___________ . ‘Oral or Literary? Some Strands of the Argument’, Studia Hibernica 17-18 (1977-78): 7-35.

Ó Buachalla, Breandán. An Caoine agus an Chaointeoireacht (Dublin, 1998).

Ó Crualaoich, Gearóid. ‘The ‘Merry Wake’, Irish Popular Culture, eds. Donnelly and Miller (Dublin, 1998), pp.173-200.

Ó hAilín, Tomás. ‘Caointe agus Caointeoirí’ (i.) Feasta 23:10 (Eanáir, 1971): 7-11.

---. ‘Caointe agus Caointeoirí’ (ii.) Feasta 23:11 (Feabhra, 1971): 5-9.

Ó Madagáin, Breandán. ‘Ceol an Chaointe’, Gnéithe den Chaointearacht, ed. Ó Madagáin (Baile Átha Cliath, 1978), pp.30-52.

___________ . ‘Song for Emotional Release in the Gaelic Tradition’, Irish Musical Studies, 2: Music and the Church, eds. Gillen and White (Dublin, 1993), pp.254-75.

___________ . Caointe agus Seancheolta Eile: Keening and Other Old Irish Musics (Indreabhán, Connemara, 2005; book and CD).

Ó Suilleabhain, Seán. ‘The Keening of the Dead’, Irish Wake Amusements (originally 1961 in Irish; Dublin and Cork, 1969), pp.130-145.

Partridge, Angela. ‘Caoineadh na dTrí Muire agus an Chaointeoireacht’, Gnéithe den Chaointeoireacht, ed. Ó Madagáin (Baile Átha Cliath, 1978), pp.67-81.

___________ . ‘Wild Men and Wailing Women’, Éigse 18.1 (1980): 25-37.

___________ . ‘“Is Beo Duine Tar Éis a Bhuailte. …”: Caoineadh Aorach as Béara’, Sinsear 3 (1981): 70-76.


Henigan, Julie. ‘Sean-nós in Donegal: In Search of a Definition’, Ulster Folklife 37 (1991): 97-105.

Ó Laoire, Lillis. ‘“Sean-nós ar a bhonnai faoi dheireadh”: Tionchar an Oireachtais ar chaomhnú na n-amhrán’, Comhar 52.8 (1993): 80-5.


Ó Madagáin, Breandán. ‘Gaelic Work-Songs’, Ireland of the Welcomes (March-April, 1990): 29-32.

The ballad

See also political song

Allingham, William. ‘Irish Ballad Singers and Irish Street Ballads’ (1852), Ceol 3.1 (1967): 2-20.

Breslin, Hugh. ‘Ballads and Jobbing Printers’, Mourne Review: Strabane Historical Society (1991): 40-46.

Hand, John. Irish Street Ballads, facsimile ed., with an introduction by Wall (Blackrock, 1976).

Lover, Samuel. ‘National Minstrelsy: Ballads and Ballad Singers’, in The Dublin Literary Gazette and National Magazine 1 (1830): 193-203.

Millar, Branford P. ‘Eighteenth-Century Views of the Ballad’, Western Folklore 9.2 (1950): 124-35.

Moulden, John. ‘The Printed Ballad in Ireland: A Guide to the Popular Printing of Songs in Ireland, 1760-1920’ (PhD. NUI, Galway, 2006).

Murphy, Maura. ‘The Ballad Singer and the Role of the Seditious Ballad in Nineteenth-Century Ireland: Dublin Castle’s View’, Ulster Folklife 25 (1975): 79-102.

Neilands, Colin. ‘Broadside Ballads and Irish Society: An Examination of the Themes of Religion and Love’, Lore and Language 10.1 (1991): 3-26.

___________ . ‘Irish Broadside Ballads: Performers and Performances’, Folk Music Journal 6.2 (1991): 209-22.

___________ . ‘Na Bailéidí Béarla’, Leachtaí Cholm Cille VI. 2nd ed. ed. Ó Fiannachta (Má Nuad, 1983), pp.59-87

Ó Lochlainn, Colm. The Complete Irish Street Ballads (London, 1984).

Shields, Hugh. ‘Literacy and the Ballad Genre in Ireland’ in Aspecten van het Europese Marktlied: 12d Internationale Volksballadenconferentie, 1981 (Brussels, 1982), pp.151-65.

___________ . ‘Ballads, Ballad-Singing and Ballad-Selling’ in Popular Music in 18th-Century Dublin (Dublin, 1985), pp.24-31.

___________ . ‘Popular Modes of Narration and the Popular Ballad’ in The Ballad and Oral Literature, ed. Harris (Cambridge, 1991), pp.40-52.

___________ . ‘Textual Criticism and Ballad Studies’ in Dear Far-Voiced Veteran: Essays in Honour of Tom Munnelly, ed. Clune (Miltown Malbay, 2007), pp.287-294.

The ode

Adams, Martin. ‘Purcell’s “Curiously Poor and Perfunctory Piece of Work”: Critical Reflections on Purcell via His Music for the Centenary of Trinity College’, Irish Musical Studies 10: Music, Ireland and the Seventeenth Century, eds. Boydell and Houston (Dublin, 2009), pp.181-203.

Owens, Samantha. ‘Johann Sigismund Cousser, William III and the Serenata in Early Eighteenth-Century Dublin’, Eighteenth-Century Music 6 (2009): 7-40.

Samuel, Harold E. ‘John Sigismond Cousser in London and Dublin’, Music and Letters 61 (1980): 158-71.

Political song

Cooper, David. ‘Lámh Dearg: Celtic Minstrels and Orange Songsters’, Celtic Cultural Studies, An Interdisciplinary Online Journal (1999). <>.

Ó Muirithe, Diarmaid. ‘“Tho’ Not in Full Stile Compleat”: Jacobite Songs from Gaelic

Manuscript Sources’, Eighteenth Century Ireland, 6 (1991): 93-103.

MacQuoid, G. Jacobite Songs and Ballads (London, 1888).

Moylan, Terry, ed. The Age of Revolution: 1776 to 1815 in the Irish Song Tradition (Dublin, 2000).

Moylan, Terry. Songs Composed During the Irish Rebellion of 1798 (Ennistymon, 2001).

Zimmerman, Georges-Denis. Songs of Irish Rebellion: Political Street Ballads and Rebel Songs, 1780-1900 (Dublin, 1967).

Love song

Ó Fiaich, Tomás. ‘Na hAmhráin Ghrá’, Leachtaí Cholm Cille VII, ed. Ó Fiannachta (Má Nuad, 1976), pp.121-148.

Ó Tuama, Seán. An Grá in Amhráin na nDaoine: Léiriú Téamúil (1960; Dublin, 1978).

___________ . ‘Love in Irish Folksong,’ in Repossessions (Cork, 1995), pp.134-58.

Religious song (see also ‘earliest beginnings’)

Adams, Rachel S. ‘The Significance of David Weyman’s Melodia sacra 1812-14’ (MA, NUIM, 2008).

Boydell, Barra, ed. Music at Christ Church before 1800: Documents and Selected Anthems (Dublin, 1999).

Boydell, Barra. ‘“Now That the Lord Hath Readvanc’d the Crown”: Richard Hosier, Durham MS B.1 and the Early Restoration Anthem Repertoire at the Dublin Cathedrals’, Early Music 28 (2000): 238-51.

___________ . ‘Manuscript Sources from Irish Cathedrals: The Cashel Cathedral Choir-Books, a Preliminary Report’, Brio 39: 2 (2002): 21-31.

___________ . ‘“A Bright Exception to the General Rule”? Musical Standards at Christ Church Cathedral Dublin in the Early Nineteenth Century’, Nineteenth-Century British Music Studies, 2, eds. Dibble and Zon (Aldershot, 2002), pp.46-58.

___________ . A History of Music at Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin (Woodbridge, 2004).

Gillen, Gerard. ‘Church Music in Dublin, 1500-1900’, Four Centuries of Music in Ireland, ed. Boydell (London 1979), pp.23-7.

___________ . ‘Irish Catholics and Hymns’, The Furrow 51 (2000): 548-56.

Gillen, Gerard and Andrew Johnstone, eds. Irish Musical Studies 6: A Historical Anthology of Irish Church Music (Dublin, 2001).

Grindle, W.H. Irish Cathedral Music (Belfast, 1989).

Houston, Kerry. ‘The Eighteenth-Century Music Manuscripts at St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin: Sources, Lineage and Relationship to Other Collections’ (PhD, TCD, 2003).

___________ . ‘Music Fit for a King: The Restoration of Charles II and the Dublin Cathedral Repertoire’, Irish Musical Studies 10: Music, Ireland and the Seventeenth Century, eds. Boydell and Houston (Dublin, 2009), pp.148-67.

Neary, Denise M. ‘Music in Late Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Dublin Churches’, Irish Musical Studies 4: The Maynooth International Musicological Conference 1995: Selected Proceedings Part I, eds. Devine and White (Dublin, 1996), pp.103-110.

Ní Riain, Nóirín. ‘The Nature and Classification of Traditional Religious Songs in Irish, with a Survey of Printed and Oral Sources’, Irish Musical Studies 2: Music and the Church, eds. Gillen and White (Dublin, 1993), pp.190-253.

Ó Ciosáin, Niall. ‘Pious miscellanies and spiritual songs: devotional publishing and reading in Irish and Scottish Gaelic, 1760-1900’, in Irish and English: Essays on the Irish linguistic and cultural frontier, eds. Kelly and Mac Murchaidh (Dublin, 2012).

O’Hanlon, Tríona. ‘Lewis Gibson and “Miss Mathews”: Two Eighteenth- and Early Nineteenth-Century Provincial Irish Cathedral Composers and the Editing of Their Works’ (MA, NUIM, 2003).

Sherwin, Elaine. ‘An Edition of Selected Anthems by Sir John Stevenson with Critical Commentary’ (MA, NUIM, 2000).

Zon, Bennett. ‘The Revival of Plainchant in the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland, 1777-1858’, Irish Musical Studies 5: The Maynooth International Musicological Conference 1995: Selected Proceedings, Part 2, eds. Devine and White (Dublin, 1996), pp.251-61.

Art song

Hufstader, Alice Anderson. ‘Beethovern’s Irische Lieder: Sources and Problems’, The Musical Quarterly 45 (1959): 343-60.

Cooper, Barry. ‘Beethoven’s Folksong Settings as Sources of Irish Folk Music’, Irish Musical Studies 5: The Maynooth International Musicological Conference 1995: Selected Proceedings, Part 2, eds. Devine and White (Dublin, 1996), pp.65-81.

Macaronic song

Ó Muirithe, Diarmuid. An t-amthrán macarónach (Baile Átha Cliath, 1980).

___________ . ‘Macaronic Song’, in The Companion to Irish Traditional Music, ed. Vallely (New York, 1999).

Ó Tuama, Seán. An grá in amhráin no ndaoine (1960; Dublin, 1978).

Earliest beginnings

(see also ‘Religious song’)

Boydell, Barra. ‘Evidence for Music in the Medieval Irish Liturgy: A Survey’, Anáil Dé, The Breath of God: Music, Ritual and Spirituality, ed. Phelan (Dublin, 2001), pp.71-80.

Brennan, Patrick. ‘Medieval Ireland: Music in Cathedral, Church and Cloister’, Early Music 28 (2000): 193-202.

Bruford, Alan. ‘Song and Recitation in Early Irish’, Celtica 21 (1973): 61-74.

Buckley, Ann. Hearing the Past: Essays in Historical Ethnomuiscology and the Archaeology of Sound (Liège, 2000).

___________ . ‘Music and Musicians in Medieval Irish Society’, Early Music 28: 2 (2000): 165-90.

___________ . “Music in Ireland to c. 1500”, in A New History of Ireland, 1, Prehistoric and Early Ireland, ed. Ó Cróinín (Oxford, 2005), pp.744–813.

___________ . ‘Peregrini pro Christo: The Irish Church in Medieval Europe as Reflected in Liturgical Sources for the Veneration of Its Missionary Saints’, De musica disserenda 14: 1 (Ljubljana, 2008): 93-105.

Casey, Sarah G. ‘The Drummond Missal: A Preliminary Investigation into Its Historical, Liturgical and Musicological Significance in Pre-Norman Ireland’ (MA, Pittsburgh, 1995).

___________ . ‘“Through a Glass Darkly”: Steps towards Reconstructing Irish Chant from he Neumes of the Drummond Missal’, Early Music 28.2 (2000): 205-15.

Curran, Michael. The Antiphonary of Bangor and the Early Irish Monastic Liturgy (Dublin, 1984).

Czernin, Martin. ‘Fragments of Liturgical Chat from Medieval Irish Monasteries in Continental Europe’, Early Music 28: 2 (2000): 217-24.

Fleischmann, Aloys. ‘The Neumes in Irish Liturgical Manuscripts’ (MA, UCC, 1932).

___________ . ‘Chant in the Early Irish Church’, Hibernia (1936): 40-5.

Furlong, Senan. ‘Officium S. Patricii: The Medieval Office of Saint Patrick’, 2 vols. (MLitt, NUIM, 2008).

Harrison, Frank Llewellyn. ‘Polyphony in Medieval Ireland’, Festschrift Bruno Stäblein ed. Ruhnke (Kassel, 1967), pp.74-9.

Howlett, David. ‘The Polyphonic Colophon to Cormac’s Psalter’, Peritia 9 (1995): 81-91.

Jeffrey, Peter. ‘Eastern and Western Elements in the Irish Monastic Prayer of the Hours’, in The Divine Office in the Latin Middle Ages, eds. Fassler and Baltzer (Oxford, 2000), pp.99-143.

Lapidge, Michael. ‘Columbanus and the “Antiphonary of Bangor”’, Peritia 4 (1985): 104-16.

___________ . ‘“Precamur patrem”: An Easter Hymn by Columbanus?’, Colambanus: Studies on the Latin Writings, ed. Lapidge (Woodbridge, 1997), pp.255-63.

Lawrence, Frank. ‘What Did They Sing at Cashel in 1171?: Winchester, Sarum and Romano-Frankish Chant in Ireland’, Journal for the Society of Musicology in Ireland 3 (2007-8): 111-25.

___________ . ‘An Irish Gradual of the Twelfth Century – Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Rawl. C. 892: A Palaeographical, Liturgical and Repertorial Study’, 2 vols. (PhD, UCD, 2008)

Ní Chatháin, Próinséas. ‘Some Early Irish Hymn Material’, Famulus Christi: Essays in Commemoration of the Thirteenth-Centenary of the Birth of the Venerable Bede, ed. Bonner (London, 1976), pp.229-38.

Oskamp, Hans. ‘The Irish Quatrains and Salutation in the Drummond Missal’, Ériu 28 (1977): 82-91.

Stevenson, Jane. ‘Hiberno-Latin Hymns: Learning and Literature’, Ireland and Europe in the Early Middle Ages, Learning and Literature, eds. Ní Chatháin and Richter (Stuttgart, 1996), pp.99-135.

Warren, F.E., ed. The Liturgy and Ritual of the Celtic Church (Oxford, 1881); repr with a new introduction by Jane Stevenson, Studies in Celtic History 9 (Woodbridge, 1987).

Bardic Poetry and Incantation

Bergin, Osborn. Irish Bardic Poetry (Dublin, 1970).

Carney, James. The Irish Bardic Poet (Dublin, 1967).

Knott, Eleanor. Irish Classical Poetry, Commonly Called Bardic Poetry (Dublin, 1971).

Ó Madagáin, Breand in, ‘Irish Vocal Music of Lament and Syllabic Verse’, in The Celtic Consciousness, ed. O’Driscoll (Toronto, 1981), pp.309-32.

___________ . ‘Ceol a chanadh Eoghan Mór Ó Comhrai’, Béaloideas 51 (1983): 71-86.


Ó Buachalla, Breandán. Aisling ghéar: Na Stiobhartaigh agus an t-aos léinn 1603-1788 (Dublin, 1988).

___________ . ‘An Aisling’, Scribhneoir faoi chabidil, ed. Titley (Dublin, 2010), pp.31-42.

The seventeenth century

Blankenhorn, Virginia. Irish Song-Craft and Metrical Practice Since 1600 (Lewiston, NY, and Lampeter, 2003).

Doan, James E. ‘The Folksong Tradition of Cearball Ó Dálaigh’, Folklore 96.1 (1985): 67-86.

Houston, Kerry and Barra Boydell. Music, Ireland, and the Seventeenth Century (Dublin, 2009).

Ó Buachalla, Breandán. ‘Ceol na Filíochta’, Studia Hibernica 32 (2002–2003): 99-132.


de h’Íde, Dubhghlas, ed. Amhráin Chúige Chonnacht I-III: O Cearrbhalláin. amhráin molta na mban, amhráin óil (Dublin, 1985).

Joyce, Sandra. ‘An Introduction to O’Carolan’s Music in Eighteenth-Century Printed Collections’, Irish Musical Studies 4: The Maynooth International Musicological Conference 1995: Selected Proceedings, Part 1, eds. Devine and White (Dublin, 1996), pp.296-309.

Ó Murchú, Liam P., ed. Amhráin Chearbhalláin/The Poems of Carolan: Reassessments (London, 2007).

O'Sullivan, Donal. Carolan: The Life, Times and Music of an Irish Harper, 2 vols. (London, 1958).

Rimmer, Joan. ‘Patronage, Style and Structure in the Music Attributed to Turlough Carolan’, Early Music 15.2 (1987): 164-74.

Rogers, David. ‘The Music of the Irish Harper Turlough Carolan: Influences, Style and Reception’ (MA, Oregon, 1996).

Trimble, Joan. ‘Carolan and His Patrons in Fermanagh and Neighbouring Areas’, Clogher Record 10. 1 (1979): 26-50.

Walker, Joseph Cooper. Historical Memoirs of the Irish Bards (Dublin, 1786).

White, Harry. ‘Carolan and the Dislocation of Music in Ireland’, 4 Eighteenth-Century Ireland / Iris an dá chultúr (1989): 55-64.

Yeats, Gráinne. ‘The Rediscovery of Carolan’, in Integrating Tradition: The Achievement of Seán Ó Riada, eds. Harris and Freyer (Chester Springs, PA, 1981).

The eighteenth century (see also ‘The Ballad’ above)

Boydell, Barra. A Dublin Musical Calendar, 1700-1760 (Dublin, 1988).

___________ . ‘The Development of the Dublin Music Print Trade to 1800’, Long Room 41 (1996): 25-33.

___________ . ‘“Whatever has a Foreign Tone / We like much better than our own”: Irish Music and Anglo-Irish Identity in the Eighteenth Century’, in Music and Identity in Ireland and Beyond, eds. Fitzgerald and O’Flynn (Farnham, 2014), pp.19-38.

Boydell, Brian. ‘Venues for Music in 18th-Century Dublin’, Dublin Historical Record 29.1 (1975): 28-34.

___________ . ‘The Dublin Musical Scene 1749-1750 and Its Background’, Proceedings of the Royal Musical Association 105 (1978-9): 77-89.

___________ . ‘Music at the Rotunda Gardens in Dublin, 1771-91’, Irish Musical Studies 1: Musicology in Ireland, eds. Gillen and White (Dublin, 1990): 99-116.

___________ . Rotunda Music in Eighteenth-Century Dublin (Dublin, 1992).

Breatnach, Pádraig A. ‘Oral and Written Transmission of Poetry in the Eighteenth Century’, Eighteenth Century Ireland 2 (1987): 57-65.

Breathnach, R. A. The End of a Tradition: A Survey of eighteenth Century Gaelic Literature’, Studia Hibernica 1 (1961): 128-50.

Carolan, Nicholas. ‘Introduction’, John & William Neal, A Collection of the Most Celebrated Irish Tunes proper for the violin, German flute or hautboy, Dublin 1724: facsimile edition (1986; Dublin, 2010), pp.1-51.

Davis, Leith. Music, Postcolonialism and Gender (Chicago, 2006).

Flood, W.H. Grattan. ‘Barton’s Psalms (1698): The Earliest Known Dublin-Printed Music-Book’ Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries in Ireland 42 (Dublin, 1912): 246-59.

Gillespie, Raymond. ‘Music and song in early eighteenth-century Belfast’, in Irish Provincial Cultures in the Long Eighteenth Century. Essays for Toby Barnard, eds. Gillespie and Foster (Dublin, 2012), pp.155-169.

Harrison, Frank L. ‘Music, Poetry, and Polity in the Age of Swift’, Eighteenth-Century Ireland / Iris an dá chultúr 1 (1986): 37-64.

Henigan, Julie. ‘“For Want of Education”: The Origins of the Hedge Schoolmaster Songs’, Ulster Folklife 40 (1994): 27-38.

___________ . Literacy and Orality in Eighteenth-Century Irish Song (London, 2012).

Hogan, Ita M. Anglo-Irish Music, 1780-1830 (Cork, 1966).

Ó Buachalla, Breandán, ed. Peadar Ó Dornín: Amhráin (Baile Átha Cliath, 1970).

Ó hÁinle, Cathal. ‘An Ceol san Fhilíocht Chlasaiceach’, An Ceol i Litríocht na Gaeilge, Léachtaí Cholm Cille VII, ed. Ó Fiannachta (Má Nuad, 1976), pp.31-57.

Ó Madagáin, Breandán. ‘Coibhneas na Filíochta leis an gCeol, 1700-1900’, Saoi na hÉigse: Aistí in Ó mós do Sheán Ó Tuama, ed. Riggs et al. (Baile Átha Cliath, 2000), pp.83-104.

Ó Muirithe, Diarmaid, ‘Of English Fayre I am Scarce Indeed’: Amhráin Ghaeilge agus a n-Aistritheoirí c. 1700–1850’, in Foinn agus Fonnadóirí: Léachtaí Cholm Cille, 29, ed. Ó hUiginn (Maynooth, 1999), pp.138-60.

Rubsamen, W.H. ed. Irish Ballad Operas and Burlesques 1 (New York, 1974).

Shields, Hugh, ‘New Dates for Old Songs: 1766-1802’, Long Room (1979): 34-41.

___________ . ‘Ballads, Ballad-Singing and Ballad-Selling’ in Popular Music in 18th-Century Dublin (Dublin, 1985), pp.24-31.

___________ . Oliver Goldsmith and Popular Song in 18th-Century Dublin (Dublin, 1985).

Walsh, T.J. Opera in Dublin, 1705-1797: The Social Scene (Dublin, 1973).

Williams, Nicholas, ed. Riocard Bairéad: Amhráin (Baile Átha Cliath, 1978).

Williams, Sean and Lillis Ó Laoire, Bright Star of the West: Joe Heaney, Irish Song Man (Oxford, 2011).


Fox, Charlotte Milligan. Annals of the Irish Harpers (London, 1911).

Johnston, Roy. Bunting’s ‘Messiah’ (Belfast, 2003).

Moloney, Colette, ed, The Irish Music Manuscripts of Edward Bunting (1773-1843): An Introduction and Catalogue (Dublin, 2000).

Petrie, George. ‘Edward Bunting’, Dublin University Magazine 29 (Dublin, 1847)

White, Harry. The Keeper’s Recital: Music and Cultural History in Ireland, 1770-1970 (Cork, 1998).

Yeats, Gráinne. Féile na gCúirtirí, Béal Feirste: The Belfast Harper's Festival, 1792 (Dublin, 1980).

___________ . The Harp of Ireland: The Belfast Harpers’ Festival 1792 and the Savings of Ireland’s Harp-Music by Edward Bunting (Dalkey, 1992).

The nineteenth century (se also ‘The ballad’ above)

Cohane, Mary Ellen, and Kenneth S. Goldstein. ‘Folksongs and the Ethnography of Singing in Patrick Kennedy’s The Banks of the Boro,’ The Journal of American Folklore 109.434 (Autumn, 1996): 425-436.

Cooper, David and Lillis Ó Laoire, eds. The Petrie Collection of the Ancient Music of Ireland (Cork, 2002).

Moulden, John. Songs of Hugh McWilliams, Schoolmaster, 1831 (Portrush, 1993).

___________ . ‘Two dimensions to orality in nineteenth-century Ireland: a discussion of the functioning of printed ballads’ in Anáil an Bhéil Bheo, Orality and Modern Irish Culture, eds. Crosson, Ní Chróinín and Eastlake (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 2009).

___________ . ‘Popular Songs’ in The Oxford History of the Irish Book Volume IV, The Irish Book in English 1800-1891, ed. Murphy (Oxford, 2011), pp.602-11.

Munnelly, Tom. ‘The Manuscript Songbook of John McCall (1822-1902): A 19th-Century Collection of Songs and Ballads from the Carlow-Wexford Border’, Lares 51: 4 (1985): 453-77.

Ní Chinnéide, V. ‘The Sources of Moore’s Melodies’, Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland 89. 2 (1959): 109-54.

Ó Madagáin, Breandán. ‘Functions of Irish Folksong in the Nineteenth Century’, Béaloideas 53 (1985): 130-216.

Wilgus, D. K. ‘Irish Traditional Narrative Songs in English: 1800-1916’, in Views of the Irish Peasantry 1800-1916, eds. Casey and Rhodes (Hamden, CT, 1977), pp.107-128.

Irish Song in Comparative Contexts

Carney, James, ‘The Sea-Divided Gaels: Some Relationships between Scottish Gaelic, Irish and English Traditional Songs’, International Folk Music Society 1 (1973): 4-27.

Flood, W H Grattan. ‘Robert Burns as an adapter of Irish Melodies’, New Ireland Review 25 (1906): 160-6, 237-44, 297-304.

Moulden, John. ‘One Singer, Two Voices: Scots and Irish Style Song in the Work of the Mid-Antrim Poet and Songmaker Hugh McWilliams’, The Local Accent; Selected Proceedings from Blas, eds. Smith and Ó Súilleabháin (Limerick, 1997).

Ó Tuama, Seán. An grá in amhráin na ndaoine (1968; Dublin, 1978).

Shields, Hugh, and Tom Munnelly. ‘Scots Ballad Influences in Ireland’, Ceol Tíre (1970): 3-22.

White, Harry. ‘Is This Song about You? Some Reflections on Music and Nationalism in Germany and Ireland’, International Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of Music 33.2 (2002): 131-47.

Wilgus, D.K. ‘The Aisling and the Cowboy: Some Unnoticed Influences of Irish Vision Poetry on Anglo-American Balladry’, Western Folklore 44.4 (1985): 255-300.

Individual songs

Bonny Light Horseman

Brown, Roly. 'No. 25: Bonny Light Horseman' in Glimpses into the 19th Century Broadside Ballad Trade (Online Publication, 2006) <>

Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoghaire

Bourke, Angela. ‘More in Anger than in Sorrow: Irish women’s Lament Poetry’, in Feminist

Message: Coding in Women’s Folk Culture, ed. Radner (Urbana, IL, 1993), pp.160-82.

___________ . ‘Performing, Not Writing: The Reception of an Irish Woman’s Lament’, in Dwelling in Possibility: Women Poets and Critics on Poetry, ed. Prins et al (Ithaca, NY, 1997), pp.132-46.

Bromwich, Rachel, ‘The Keen for Art O’Leary: Its Background and Its Place in the Tradition

of Gaelic Keening’, Éigse 5.4 (1947-48): 236-52.

Cullen, Louis. ‘The Contemporary and Later Politics of Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoire’, Eighteenth Century Ireland / Iris an dá chultúr 8 (1993): 7-19.

Mac Lochlainn, Alf. ‘Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoghaire: Leagan as Lámhscríbhinn’, Studia Hibernica 12 (1972): 109-19.

McKibben, Sarah. ‘Angry Laments and Grieving Postcoloniality’ in New Voices in Irish Criticism, ed. Mathews (Dublin, 2000), pp.215-223.

Ó Tuama, Seán. Caoineadh Airt Uí Laoghaire (1961; Baile Átha Cliath, 1993).

Eibhlin a Rúin

Casey-McGlynn, Nollaig. ‘Eibhlin a Rúin and the Impact of Fashion in its Dissemination in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Ireland’ (MA, Queen’s University of Belfast, 2011).

Kloss, Jürgen. ‘“Eileen Aroon” & “Robin Adair”: A Chronological List: 1729-c.1900’ (2011-2014), at ‘Just Another Tune: Songs & Their History’,

Kilmore Carols

Ranson, Joseph. ‘The Kilmore Carols’, The Past 5 (1949): 61-102.

Ó Muirithe, Diarmaid and Seóirse Bodley, The Wexford Carols (Portlaoise, 1982).

Wall, Thomas, ed. The Christmas Songs of Luke Wadding, Bishop of Ferns 1683-1688 (Dublin, 1960).

The Lass of Aughrim

Shields, Hugh. ‘The History of The Lass of Aughrim’, Irish Musical Studies 1: Musicology in Ireland, eds. Gillen and White (Dublin, 1990), pp.58-73.


Flood, W.H. Grattan. ‘Lilliburlero’, The Musical Times and Singing Class Circular 21.453 (1880): 567.

Ó Buachalla, Brendan. ‘Lillibulero: The New Irish Song’, Familia: Ulster Genealogical Review 2.7 (1991): 47-69.

Ó Buachalla, Brendan. ‘Lillibulero agus Eile’, Comhar, 46.3-7 (Máirt-Iúl 1987): 13-15.

Heywood, Antony. ‘Is Lilliburlero an Old Dutch Folk Tune?’, English Dance and Song, 61.1 (1999): 4.

Moll Dubh an Ghleanna

Ó Concheanainn, Tomás. ‘Moll Dubh an Ghleanna’, Éigse 11:4 (Autumn, 1966): 253-85.

Rose Connoley

Wilgus, D. K. “Rose Connoley”: An Irish Ballad.” Journal of American Folklore 92.2 (1979): 172-195.

Shein shees

Breathnach, Breandán. ‘The First Irish Song Published’, Ceol 5.1 (1981): 2-3.

Shule Agrah

Gardham, Steve. ‘A Veritable Dunghill 18: Shule Agrah’, Musical Traditions 164, ed. Stradling <>.

An Tighearna Randal

Williams, Sean. ‘An Tighearna Randal: An Irish-Gaelic Version of Lord Randall’, Seattle Folklore Society Journal 2 (1984): 13-17.