Darling Nedeen

John Johnson Marshall
Chapter XI (3) - Start of Chapter

“Darling Nedeen.” The little town of Kenmare situated at the mouth of the river of that name was formerly called Nedeen. It once took into its head that Lord Lansdowne, on whose property it is situated, did not patronise and encourage it as he should. Being informed that he was coming to visit it with the poet Thomas Moore in his company, in 1823, it endeavoured to arouse his interest by a poem which was sufficiently extraordinary to excite the attention of both the peer and the poet. The following verses serve as an example:—

Darling Nedeen.

“Och! it’s there you will see both the hedgehog and whale,

The latter continually flapping his tail

Just to raise up a breeze for the fowls of the air

As the eagle, the jackass or gosling so fair,

While they sing around the cabins of darling Nedeen.

There the geese run about through the midst of the street

Ready-roasted, inviting the people they meet

To eat, lord and squire, cobbogue and spalpeen,

From the cows they get whiskey, the ganders give milk

An’ their best woollen blankets is all made of silk.

Their purty young girls they never grow old

And the sun never set there last winter, I’m told,

But stay’d lighting the pipes of the boys of Nedeen.”

Whether this effusion of the local muse had the desired effect on his Lordship or not, Lewis (Top. Dict.) records that in 1831 “the number of houses was 170, and since that period several others have been erected in consequence of the encouragement given by the proprietor, the Marquess of Lansdowne.”