Ormond's March

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ORMOND'S MARCH. AKA and see "Duke of Ormond's March." English, Country Dance Tune (cut time). C Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Irish-born James FitzJames Butler [1] (1665–1745), 2nd Duke of Ormonde, to whom the title may refer, was a successful military commander for the English monarchs William and Mary and Queen Anne, however, when the Hanoverian George I came to power in 1714 Ormonde was quickly demoted. He supported the Stuarts in the Jacobite rising of 1715, and, as a consequence, his lands and property were forfeit to the crown and he ended his days in exile.

The melody and country dance instructions ("Longways for as many as will") were printed by London publisher John Young in the third and fourth editions of his Second Volume of the Dancing Master [2] (1718 and 1728). A different "Duke of Ormond's March" melody was printed by John Playford in Apollo's Banquet (1670), and a song (with yet another tune) called "Duke of Ormond's March" was printed by Thomas D'Urfey in Wit and Mirth: or, Pills to Purge Melancholy (vol. 5), and begins:

Ye brave Boys and Tars,
That design for the Wars,
Remember the Action at Vigo;
And where ORMOND Commands,
Let us all joyn our Hands,
And where he goes, may you go, and I go.

Let Conquest and Fame,
The Honour proclaim,
Great ORMOND has gotten at Vigo;
Let the Trumpets now sound,
And the Ecchoes around,
Where he goes, may you go, and I go.

The march was well-known by 1720. In The Political State vol. XX (1720) a murder trial was recorded for the slaying of Nicholas Moore by Giles Hill in a tavern. The deceased came into the tavern and bid the musicians play "Duke of Ormond's March", which was objected to by Hill and others. Soon afterwards, Moore proposed a toast to Ormond, and further words were exchanged. The argument quickly escalated into the drawing of swords, with Hill prevailing to stab Moore once in the chest, a wound to which the latter quickly succumbed. Hill was acquitted of murder by the jury, "and so they brought in the Prisoner Guilty of Manslaughter: Hereupon he was burnt in the Hand."

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Bremner (Delightful Pocket Companion for the German Flute, vol. 2, part 4), c. 1763; p. 35 (as "Duke of Ormond's March").

Recorded sources:




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