“Erin's Green Linnet”


Singer asks why a maid weeps. "I once had a Linnet, the pride of this nation, By the fowler he was taken." The Linnet sung throughout Ireland and "upon Tara's old hill" and "famed Mullingar," championed Emancipation in 1829. Now he is lying in Glasnevin.


"1829 saw Catholic 'emancipation,' allowing them every political right open to Protestants of equivalent position" (- RBW). O'Connell led the movement of 1840-1843 to repeal the act that joined Ireland and Great Britain as the United Kingdom with "monster meetings" at Tara and Mullingar and other places (cf. "Glorious Repeal Meeting Held at Tara Hill" and "The Meeting of Tara"). Zimmermann: "O'Connell died at Genoa, on his way to Rome, 15th May, 1847." (p. 233) "In accordance with his wish his heart was brought to Rome and his body to Ireland. His funeral was of enormous dimensions, and since his death a splendid statue has been erected to his memory in Dublin and a round tower placed over his remains in Glasnevin" (source: "Daniel O'Connell" by E.A. D'Alton in _The Catholic Encyclopedia_ on the New Advent site. - BS

Cross references


  • Bodleian, 2806 b.10(23), "O'Connell's Green Linnet," H. Such (London), 1863-1885; also Harding B 19(40), 2806 c.8(41), Harding B 26(173)[some words illegible with heading "Linnet" as "Linne;"], "Erin's Green Linnet"; Firth c.16(83), "The O'Connell, Erin-go-bragh"; Harding B 19(39), "The Green Linnet"


  1. Zimmermann 56, "Erin's Green Linnet" (1 text)
  2. Healy-OISBv2, pp. 92-94, "Erin's Green Linnet" (1 text)
  3. Roud #12903
  4. BI, Zimm059


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1847 (Zimmermann)
Found in: Ireland