Lough Erne's Shore

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LOUGH ERNE'S SHORE. Irish, Air (3/4 time). E Flat Major (Petrie): D Minor (O Boyle). Standard tuning. One part (O Boyle): AB (Petrie). O Boyle (1976) identifies this song as a reverie, a type of Irish vision poetry in which a maiden appears and is at first thought to be supernatural, but who turns out to be very real. Though in English, he believes it to be derived from Gaelic origins and may even possibly be the work of Fermanagh hedge-school masters (who sometimes did compose in English, though to Irish airs, and who made use of Latin and Greek mythology).

One morning as I went a fowling Bright Phoebus adorned the plain,
'Twas down by the shores of Lough Erne I met with this wonderful dame;
Her voice was so sweet and so pleasing, These beautiful notes she did sing;
The innocent fowl of the forest their love unto her they did bring.

There is another song called "Lough Erne Shore," sometimes called "Edward on the Lough Erne Shore" to distinguish it from the one given here (see, for example, Catherine McLaughlin's version on "Hidden Fermanagh" CD).

Source for notated version: "From Miss Ross" [Stanford/Petrie]; Paddy Tunney [O Boyle].

Printed sources: Ó Boyle (The Irish Song Tradition), 1976; p. 68. Stanford/Petrie (Complete Collection), 1905; Nos. 652 & 653, pp. 163-164.

Recorded sources: Paddy Tunney.

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