“The Mountains of Mourne”


The Irishman in London writes home to Mary to tell her of the city. He describes how the local women dress (or, rather, don't dress). He watches the King of England. He wishes he were home with Mary "where the Mountains of Mourse sweep down to the see"


The tune is said to be "Carrighdhoun," but it is now much better known under French's title.

Edward VII's visit to Ireland in 1903 had little real effect; five of six histories I checked had no mention of the event (and some other reference apparently had the wrong date, since earlier versions of this Index gave the date as 1905).

But his trip did show an interesting change in Irish attitudes: quite a few radical nationalists were very upset about the visit, but the ordinary people seem to have loved it; Robert Kee (_The Bold Fenian Men_, being volume II of _The Green Flag_, p. 154) calls it an "outstanding success," and cites newspaper accounts of how he was greeted. Compare the song's mention of the singer "cheer[ing] with the rest."

Too bad the Easter Rebellion, and the British over-reaction, did such a find job of messing that up. - RBW

Historical references

  • 1903 - Visit of King Edward VII to "Erin's Green Shore" (mentioned in the song)

Same tune

  • The Green Hills of Antrim (File: HHH606)

Cross references


  • Peter Dawson, "The Mountains O' Mourne"(HMV [UK] B-3772, 1931; HMV [UK] B-9114, 1940)


  2. BI, DTmtmour


Author: Percy French (died 1920)
Earliest date: 1931 (recording, Peter Dawson)
Found in: Ireland