Patriot Game Lyrics

Come all ye young rebels, and list while I sing,
For the love of one's country is a terrible thing.
It banishes fear with the speed of a flame,
And it makes us all part of the patriot game.

My name is O'Hanlon, and I've just turned sixteen.
My home is in Monaghan, and where I was weaned
I learned all my life cruel England's to blame,
So now I am part of the patriot game.

This Ireland of ours has too long been half free.
Six counties lie under John Bull's tyranny.
But still De Valera is greatly to blame
For shirking his part in the Patriot game.

They told me how Connolly was shot in his chair,
His wounds from the fighting all bloody and bare.
His fine body twisted, all battered and lame
They soon made me part of the patriot game.

It's nearly two years since I wandered away
With the local battalion of the bold IRA,
For I read of our heroes, and wanted the same
To play out my part in the patriot game.

[extra verse I found]
I don't mind a bit if I shoot down police
They are lackeys for war never guardians of peace
And yet at deserters I'm never let aim
The rebels who sold out the patriot game

And now as I lie here, my body all holes
I think of those traitors who bargained in souls
And I wish that my rifle had given the same
To those Quislings who sold out the patriot game.


D A7 D


Background: Tune: "One Morning In May", or "God on Our
Side". This song was written by Dominic Behan, brother
of Brendan. It tells the story of Fergal O'Hanlon from
Ballybay, Co Monaghan, who tried to abolish the border
between the Six Counties and the Republic. He was
killed during the Brookborough attack at the age of 17.
The song has become world famous. Undoubtedly one of
the best ballads ever to come out of the Irish

During our first year together, we were introduced to a
wide variety of music. One of the first tapes someone
lent me was a tape of I.R.B. tunes. Well the very first
task we had to figure out was what I.R.B. stood for?
Irish Republican Brotherhood. The Irish Republican
Brotherhood was formed on Saint Patrick's Day in 1858.
It was an underground organization designed to remove
the English from Ireland.

The song was recorded by numerous artists including Bob
Dylan and the Kingston Trio. Our version came from the
aforementioned I.R.B. compilation. I think it may have
been the Wolfe Tones who sang it, but I'm not sure. In
any case, it was the first rebel song we learned, and
still one of our most popular.

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Record Label(s): 2003 Mage Records

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