Coat That Was Buttoned Behind, The (An Irishman's Coat It Is Buttoned Before)
DESCRIPTION: Doolan arrives in New York and sees two men boxing, sparring without hitting; when he fights it's with his "shillaly." Bullies taunt him expecting him to run but "in less than two minutes I cleared the whole green"
EARLIEST DATE: 1867 (Pastor)
KEYWORDS: fight violence sports humorous
FOUND IN: Canada(Newf)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Guigne, pp. 89-91, "The Coat That Was Buttoned Behind (An Irishman's Coat It Is Buttoned Before)" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Tony Pastor, "Tony Pastor's New Irish Comic Songster" in Tony Pastor's Book of Six Hundred Comic Songs and Speeches (New York: Dick and Fitzgerald, 1867 ("Digitized by Google")), pp. 40-41, "An Irishman's Coat It Is Buttoned Before" ("Oh, my name is Mike Doolan - I've just come to town")
cf. "Duncan Campbell (Erin-Go-Bragh)" [Laws Q20] (theme of Irishman being abused and fighting back) and references there
NOTES [69 words]: The taunt is "Welcome, sweet Paddy, sweet Paddy from Cork. Now turn around, Paddy -- do just be so kind -- For I ne'er saw a coat that was buttoned behind.... Misther Pat, I would blacken your eye." That is, Paddy should be running away from this "big bully" so, if the bully sees his buttons they must surely be on the back of his coat. The song's title, not being part of the song, is Doolan's unspoken answer. - BS
Last updated in version 4.2
Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography
The Ballad Index Copyright 2018 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.