Irish Song (The Gay Wedding)
DESCRIPTION: "It's of a gay weeding, As you soon shall hear, Got up in good style, And it ain't far from here." "Three hundred gay fellows That day marched along, All with their great cudgels." "You'd think them the locusts From the Egyptian plains...."
EARLIEST DATE: 1914 (Gray-SongsAndBalladsOfTheMaineLumberjacks)
KEYWORDS: wedding humorous dancing foreignlanguage
FOUND IN: US(NE)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Gray-SongsAndBalladsOfTheMaineLumberjacks, p. 107, "Irish Song" (1 text)
Eckstorm/Smyth-MinstrelsyOfMaine, p. 170, "The Gay Wedding" (1 text)
cf. "The Blythesome Bridal" (theme) and references there
NOTES [131 words]: Supposedly this had a Gaelic chorus (hence the "foreignlanguage" keyword), but neither Gray-SongsAndBalladsOfTheMaineLumberjacks nor Eckstorm/Smyth-MinstrelsyOfMaine preserved it. I would not be surprised if this is a variant of one of the other riotous wedding songs, but Gray-SongsAndBalladsOfTheMaineLumberjacks's four stanzas are not enough to identify it as such.
The reference to locusts in Egypt is clearly to Exodus 10:1-20, where a plague of locusts descends upon Egypt. The reference "like the wild devils Let loose from their chains" is not quite as certain, but I strongly suspect it is a reference to the Gerasene demoniac of Mark 5:1-13 and parallels -- a man who was so heavily possessed that he would break any chain placed upon him until Jesus cast out the demons. - RBW
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