The singer dreams of meeting a beautiful girl in a green mantle. She tells him she (is a relative of Daniel O'Connell and) has come to awaken her countrymen who sleep on Erin's shore. The singer awakens and hopes the girl finds success
Daniel O'Connell (1775-1847) was an Irish patriot who worked vigorously for Catholic freedom. He did not take part in the 1798 rebellion, but promoted Irish and Catholic rights for many years, and in 1829 saw Britain lift the ban on Catholics in parliament. One of the greatest of the peaceful Irish leaders, his tragedy is that eventually neither side trusted him.
Creighton's version, "The Mantle of Green," should not be confused with Laws N38, "The Mantle So Green."
For a discussion of this type of song as a example of the genre known as the "aisling," see the notes to "Granuaile." - RBW
Broadside LOCSheet sm1855 590170: "words by James Sanford, music by A. Fletcher Stayman"; the date "created and published by Stayman and Brothers" of 1855 is later than the Bodleian Harding B 11(1085) broadside date. - BS