Annotation:John Macananty's Courtship

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X: 1 T:John MacAnanty's Courtship S:P.W.Joyce, Old Irish Folk Music and Songs (1909) F: K:D M:3/4 D2|D2 D2 DE|G4 A G|E2 D2 D2|D4 F G|A2 A2 B2| =c2 A2 G2|A2 d2 d2|d4 c d|e2 d2 c2|d4 c B| A2 F2 D2|E4 GA|Bc D2 cA|G2 E2 E2|D4 D2|D4|]

JOHN MACANANTY'S COURTSHIP. AKA and see "Fair King's Courtship," "Fairy King's Courtship," "One evening of late as I roved out in state." Irish, Air (3/4 time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). One part. "Both the air and the words of this ballad appear to me to possess much simple beauty and feeling. I learned them from my father when I was a mere child, and I never heard the air with any one else. The ballad embodies one of the many forms of a superstition formerly very prevalent in Ireland, and not quite extinct even at the present day--namely, a belief that the fairies often take away mortals to their palaces in the fairy forts, lisses, and pleasant green hills. Macananty or Macanantan was a fairy king who formerly enjoyed great celebrity in the north of Ireland, and whose fame extended also into the south. There is a hill called Scrabo in the county of Down, near Newtownards, on which is a great sepulchral carn. Under this hill and carn Macananty had his palace; and the place still retains much of its fairy reputation among the people of the district. Macananty himself is remembered in legend; and his name is quite familiar, especially among the people who inhabit the mountainous districts exztending from Dundalk to Newcastle in the county of Down. I find that here they call him in Irish Sheamus Macaneandan--James Macanantan; buy both names, John and James, must have been added in recent times" (Joyce).

Elias Howe (1867) printed the tune as "Fair King's Courtship" (a misprint of "Fairy King's Courtship").

Additional notes

Printed sources : - Joyce (Old Irish Folk Music and Songs), 1909; No. 391, pp. 198-199.

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