Irish National Anthem

The national anthem of Ireland is known as “Amhran na bhFiann” or “The Soldier’s Song.” The music for the song was originally written in 1907 by Patrick Heeney. Peadar Kearney wrote the lyrics to the song the same year in English. It wasn’t until 1923 when Liam O Rinn wrote Irish lyrics to accompany the music. The original song features three verses, but these are not part of the official national anthem that was adopted in 1926. Instead, the anthem is comprised of the choral refrain. Parts of the original song are also used for the Presidential Salute.

Today, the English version of the anthem is rarely used, and many people are not aware that the Irish version was not the original version. The song was originally written as an Irish rebel song. When looking at the full text, the general theme is that the Irish people all needed to band together to end the rule of the English. Early Irish rebellions and the support from Irish Americans are also referenced in this anthem.

Irish National Anthem Lyrics

Verse 1
We'll sing song, a soldier's song,
With cheering rousing chorus,
As round our blazing fires we throng,
The starry heavens o'er us;
Impatient for the coming fight,
And as we wait the morning's light,
Here in the silence of the night,
We'll chant a soldier's song.

Soldiers are we
whose lives are pledged to Ireland;
Some have come
from a land beyond the wave.
Sworn to be free,
No more our ancient sire land
Shall shelter the despot or the slave.
Tonight we man the gap of danger
In Erin's cause, come woe or weal
'Mid cannons' roar and rifles peal,
We'll chant a soldier's song

Verse 2
In valley green, on towering crag,
Our fathers fought before us,
And conquered 'neath the same old flag
That's proudly floating o'er us.
We're children of a fighting race,
That never yet has known disgrace,
And as we march, the foe to face,
We'll chant a soldier's song


Verse 3
Sons of the Gael! Men of the Pale!
The long watched day is breaking;
The serried ranks of Inisfail
Shall set the Tyrant quaking.
Our camp fires now are burning low;
See in the east a silv'ry glow,
Out yonder waits the Saxon foe,
So chant a soldier's song.