Theresa O’Connor

Bold Thady Quill — Irish History in Song

Sung to the same tune as “Nell Flaherty’s Drake,” “Bold Thady Quill” is an amusing tale of a Corkman’s Corkman — hurler, rover, loved by the ladies. What’s not to like about him?

Ye maids of Duhallow who’re anxious for courting
A word of advice I will give unto ye
Proceed to Banteer to the athletic sporting
And hand in your names to the club committee
And never commence any sketch on your programme
’Till the carriage you see flyin’ over the hill
Right on through the valleys and glens of Kilcorney
With our own darling sportsman the bold Thady Quill

For ramblin’, for rovin’, for football or courtin’
Or drinkin’ black porter as fast as you’d fill
In all your days rovin’ you’ll find none so jovial
As our Muskerry1 sportsman, the bold Thady Quill

At the great hurling match between Cork and Tipperary
’Twas played in the park on the banks of the Lee
Our own darlin’ lads were afraid of being beaten
So they sent for bold Thady to Ballinagree
He hurled the ball right and left in their faces
And showed the Tipperary men action and skill
If they touched on his lines he would certainly brain them
And the papers were full of the praise of Thade Quill

At the Cork Exhibition there was a fair lady
Whose fortune exceeded a million or more
But a bad constitution had ruined her completely
And medical treatment had failed o’er and o’er
“Oh mother,” says she, “sure I know what will ease me
And cure this disease that will certainly kill:
Give over your doctors and medical treatment —
I’d rather one squeeze out of bold Thady Quill!”


  1. Muskerry is a region of Cork, historicaly divided into the old baronies of East and West Muskerry. Here’s Wikipedia on Baron Muskerry.