“The Wounded Hussar”


When the battle ends Adelaide, "alone on the banks of the dark rolling Danube," finds Henry, her "wounded Hussar." He thanks her for coming "To cheer the lone heart of thy wounded Hussar." She says "thou shalt live" but he dies in her arms.


South Riding Folk Network site: "The tune Captain O'Kane (spelled in various ways) is generally attributed to the harper Turlough O'Carolan (1670-1738), though this seems to rest solely on an unsubstantiated assertion by James Hardiman (Irish Minstrelsy, or, Bardic Remains of Ireland, 1831). During the first quarter of the 19th century, Thomas Campbell's verses, The Wounded Hussar, were set to it, and under this new name it spread throughout Britain."

The ballad is recorded on one of the CD's issued around the time of the bicentenial of the 1798 Irish Rebellion. See:

Franke Harte and Donal Lunny, "The Wounded Hussar" (on Franke Harte and Donal Lunny, "My Name is Napoleon Bonaparte," Hummingbird Records HBCD0027 (2001))

Harte quoting J Cuthbert Hadden: "This ballad, now entirely forgotten, attained an extraordinary popularity [in Glasgow and London]." - BS

Same tune

  • Sweet Maiden I Admire Thee (per broadside Bodleian Firth c.14(235))


  • Bodleian, Johnson Ballads 402, "The Wounded Hussar," J. Evans (London), 1780-1812; also Harding B 28(93), Firth c.14(235), Harding B 15(393a), Harding B 15(393b), Harding B 22(354), Harding B 36(9) View 2 of 2, Harding B 25(2115), Harding B 25(2113), Harding B 11(3888), Firth b.26(176), Harding B 11(3039), Firth b.25(72), Harding B 17(347b), Harding B 12(131), Harding B 11(370), Firth c.13(50), Harding B 17(347a), Harding B 17(347a)"[The] Wounded Hussar"


  1. Creighton-Maritime, p. 159, "The Wounded Hussar" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Moylan 175, "The Wounded Hussar" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Roud #2699
  4. BI, CrMa159


Author: Thomas Campbell
Earliest date: 1799 (written 1797, according to Moylan)
Keywords: war death lover soldier
Found in: Canada(Mar) Ireland