it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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Back Home in Derry

I've been poking around, looking for references to the Hell tiend outside of Tam Lin (not having much luck--I'm trying to decide what happens to those tithed to Hell after they get there. What does the Devil want with a bunch of Faeries and/or changelings, anyway?


Anyway, I can't find another period ballad that mentions it-- At the end of ev're seven years, they pay a tithe to Hell-- but I did find a likely allusion to it in the rather famous modern Irish ballad (attributed to Bobby Sands, a name persons my age may remember), Back Home In Derry. To wit:

I cursed them to hell, as our bow fought the swill
Our ship danced like moths on the firelight
Wild horses rode high as the devil passed by
Taking souls into Hades by twilight light

And thus, the folk process. Interesting to pull up an allusion to mythic Faerie and Hell and slavery in a song tying modern political activism to that of the 19th century. Layers of complexity there. Very cool.

edit: Here's Tam Lin, for your reference.

And this is exactly why I'm opposed to copyright extensions in perpetuity.

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