“The Dying Soldier (I) (Erin Far Away II)”


A dying soldier asks a comrade to send a lock of his hair from India to his mother in Ireland. He sends his sister and brothers word of his death in the fight against the Sepoys. He dies and is buried.


This song is frankly so close to Laws J6 that I find it impossible to tell them apart. Even the first lines in Laws's sample versions are similar. Laws does not give reasons for the distinction. One should therefore examine the references for both songs. - RBW

Historical references

  • 1857-1858 - Sepoy Mutiny in India. The inhabitants of Northern India revolt against the East India Company on behalf of their ancestral customs (many of which, such as the murder of widows, were abhorrent to Western opinion)

Cross references

  • cf. "The Dying Soldier (Erin Far Away I)" [Laws J6] (plot, theme) and references there


  1. Laws J7, "The Dying Soldier (Erin Far Away II)"
  2. Rickaby 50, "The Dying Soldier" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Creighton-Maritime, p. 166, "Old Erin Far Away" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. SHenry H816, p. 92, "Old Ireland Far Away" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Dean, pp.. 5-6, "The Dying Soldier" (1 text)
  6. DT 827, DYSOLDR*
  7. Roud #893
  8. BI, LJ07


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1926 (Rickaby)
Keywords: war soldier death family
Found in: US(MW) Ireland Canada(Ont)