The Newry Highwayman

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"The Newry Highwayman" is a traditional Irish or British folk song about a criminal's life, deeds, and death. It is also found in Ireland, the USA and Canada with titles such as "Rambling Boy" and "Rude And Rambling Man". The earliest known version is from 1788, likely printed by John Brown, in a chapbook entitled "The irish robbers's [sic] adventure. To which is added An Elegy on the Death of Captain Allen."[1] The earliest broadside is from 1824 (Bodleian Harding B 25(2054)). Some versions mention "Mansfield" and this is sometimes taken to be William Murray, first Earl of Mansfield (1706-1793). The 1788 version mentions "Reddans Town" instead of Newry, though the rest of the song is nearly identical to later versions. British variants are generally classified as Roud 490; American variants are classified as Laws L12.

Other titles for this song include:

  • Wild and Wicked Youth
  • The Flash Lad
  • In Newry Town
  • Newlyn Town
  • The Rambling Boy
  • The Roving Blade
  • Adieu Adieu
  • The Irish Robber

Recordings[edit]

British and Irish variants[edit]

American variants[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The irish robbers's [sic] adventure. To which is added An Elegy on the Death of Captain Allen. 1788. p. 2 – via Gale Eighteenth Century Collections Online.

External references[edit]