“Blaris Moor”

Author: ascribed to James Garland (d. c.1842) (Source: Zimmermann)
Earliest date: 1797 ("as sung in Belfast in 1797," according to Zimmermann)
Keywords: army betrayal execution Ireland
Found in: Ireland


It would be "treason" to accuse Colonel Barber of "murder." Those shot "were lads of good behaviour" but "O'Brien and Lynch" betrayed them for gold. Offered a pardon and gold themselves, those condemned as "united" chose death, and were shot.


Blaris is a civil parish in County Antrim and County Down.

IRCroppysComplaint notes re "The Blarismoor Tragedy": "In 1797 the Monaghan Militia were quartered in Belfast. In May of that year it was discovered that large numbers of them had been secretly recruited as United Irishmen."

Zimmermann quotes a 1798 United Irishmen handbill describing the execution and refusal by the men convicted as United Irishmen to inform in spite of offers of pardon and reward.

Zimmermann's two versions have many differences but share a rhyme scheme and so many lines that I would not separate them. One seems a badly remembered version of the other. - BS

Historical references

Cross references


  1. Zimmermann 6, "Blaris Moor" (2 texts, 1 tune)
  2. Roud #13386
  3. BI, Zimm006