“The Mountains of Pomeroy”


A maid meets "her gallant Reynardine, on the mountains of Pomeroy." He is an outlaw "but keeps the flag of freedom safe." She is afraid for him. Her kinsmen would kill him. She leaves "her cruel kin and home" to go to him but drowns in a storm


This version is almost exactly George Sigerson's as quoted at "The Mountains Of Pomeroy" at The Celtic Lyrics site, copyright The Celtic Lyrics Collection 2000-2004. Steve Roud's _Folk Song Index_ reference for "Renaldine" makes it appear that this version is also in Flanders, Ballard, Brown and Barry _The New Green Mountain Songster_.

Pomeroy is in County Tyrone, Ireland. - BS

The description of Reynardine immediately made me think of the resistance fighter Michael Dwyer, who after the collapse of the 1798 rebellion organized a resistance movement in Wicklow, then was transported to Australia after giving up to the British. (For more background, see "Michael Dwyer (I)"). would explain why the girl has to cross the ocean to see him. The problem is that Wicklow is in the southeast of Ireland, Ppmeroy is in Ulster, about ten miles northwest of Dungannon or twice that from Armagh.

On the other hand, Pomeroy is not mountainous. (Fermoy, mentioned in some other versions of "Reynardine," is in south Ireland, on the Blackwater a few dozen miles north of Cork, an is in a much more hilly region.) So I think we have to conclude that this song is not intended to be "real" -- but it may have been meant to remind listeners of both Reynardine and Dwyer. - RBW

Cross references


  1. Tunney-SongsThunder, pp. 146-147, "The Mountains of Pomeroy" (1 text)
  2. BI, TST146


Author: George Sigerson (1838-1925) (source: Celtic Lyrics site)
Earliest date: 1991 (Tunney-SongsThunder)
Found in: Ireland