“Stringybark and Greenhide”


"I sing of a commodity, it's one that will not fail yer,.. the mainstay of Australia... Stringybark and greenhide can beat [gold] all to pieces." Greenhide can hold carts together; stringybark strengthens homes; the singer praises these useful products


Andrew and Nancy Learmonth _Encyclopedia of Australia_2nd edition, Warne & Co, 1973, describes stringybark as an informal name for several species of eucalyptus, the name being given because the bark "peels off in long fibrous strips."

Allthough the song presents itself as a praise of stringybark and greenhide, Patterson/Fahey/Seal see it more as a toast to the abilities of Australians to improvise, and I incline to agree. - RBW

Cross references

  • cf. 'Stringybark" (subject)


  1. Paterson/Fahey/Seal, pp. 157-159, "Stringybark and Greenhide" (1 text plus a fragment)
  2. Roud #8400
  3. BI, PFS157


Author: unknown
Earliest date: probably before 1870 (Sydney Songster)
Keywords: nonballad Australia
Found in: Australia