“The Hermit of Killarney”


On Killarney's bank the singer sees a hermit who says "Adieu, adieu, thou faithless world, thou wert not made for me!" The hermit's pitiful condition is recounted. He criticizes the world's pomp, state, and ambition and laments his own credulity. He dies


Croker-PopularSongs quotes Mr Weld who believes the inspiration for this song may be "an Englishman, of the name of Ronayn. The spot which he selected for his retreat was this small island, which yet retains his name; and when first I visited Killarney (1800), the ruins of his little habitation, planted in the midst of rocks very near the water, were still visible." Croker also quotes John Bernard Trotter['s reference] to this "celebrated song." - BS

Sir George Ogle the Younger (c. 1740-1814) was a poet and politician born in county Wexford. He served in the Irish parliament in the 1790s, and was briefly a Tory representative to Westminster. His best-known works are considered to be "Banna's Banks" (in the Index as "The Banks of Banna") and "Molly Astore" (in this index as "Gramachree"). - RBW


  1. Croker-PopularSongs, pp. 199-204, "The Hermit of Killarney" (1 text)
  2. BI, CrPS199


Author: George Ogle (1739-1814) (source: Croker-PopularSongs)
Earliest date: 1839 (Croker-PopularSongs)
Keywords: dying nonballad river