Matt Cunningham on Tin Whistle. Róisín Dubh, meaning "Black Rose", written in the 16th century, is one of Ireland's most famous political songs. It is based on an older love-lyric in which referred to the poet's beloved rather than, as here, being a metaphor for Ireland. The intimate tone of the original carries over into the political song. It is often attributed to Antoine Ó Raifteiri, but almost certainly predates him . Originally translated from the Irish language by James Clarence Mangan, this translation is credited to Pádraig Pearse. The song is named after Róisín Dubh, probably one of the daughters of Hugh O'Neill, 2nd Earl of Tyrone, Earl of Tyrone in the late 16th Century. The song is reputed to have originated in the camps of Red Hugh O'Donnell. This song is traditionally sung in the Irish language, with few if any recordings of the English existing. This song belongs to the 'aisling' or 'vision' songsof the 17th century. The reason behind the transposing of Ireland as a maiden was not merely poetic, but also avoided the English persecution of the time on songs about Ireland. It is also for this reason that political songs of this era are mostly sung in Irish, which the English authorities (for the most part) did not understand. "A Róisín ná bíodh brón ort fé'r éirigh dhuit: Tá na bráithre 'teacht thar sáile 's iad ag triall ar muir, Tiocfaidh do phárdún ón bPápa is ón Róimh anoir 'S ní spárálfar fíon Spáinneach ar mo Róisín Dubh. Is fada an réim a léig mé léi...