MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
Paddy McGinty's Goat
Jack Houlihan NFLD 1 Tape 5A Track 4
Pouch Cove Audio:
Comic song

Mister Patrick McGinty was an Irishman of note
And he fell into a fortune and invested in a goat
And singing, "Now for goats' milk I mean to have my fill."
And when he brought the nanny home he found it was a bill
Now all the ladies who live in Galaloo (?)
They all a-wear their bustles like their mothers used to do
You always wear a bolster beneath your petticoat
You can leave the rest to providence to Paddy McGinty's goat

On the east coast of Ireland the other day was seen
A large periscope of a German submarine
And Postcard Maloney fell over in a fit
He said to Paddy McGinty "'Tis up to you to do your bit."
He dived into the water as frisky as a whale
He swam around the U-boat and he shook his little tail
He dived upon the U-boat and he sent them down below
And now they're off to Helagoland to get the Kaiser's gold

Little Nora McCarthy the knot was going to tie
She washed up all her trousseaus and she hung them out to dry
And up creeped the goat on that particular night
And his . because the things were white
"Turn out the lights my dear," she said to Pat
"Although I am a bride I am not worth looking at
I have only one of everything I told you when I wrote
And all I got tonight you see is Paddy McGinty's goat."

Now Mickey O'Reilly went to the race the other day
He won $50 and he shouted hip hurrah
"And now then, said Mickey "oh look what I have got
Well the goat creeped up behind him and he swallowed down the lot."
Way Mickey snorted rise up in a jump
He went to the Dr. and he got a stomach pump
He pumped and he pumped for that $50 note
But all they got was nine cents out of Paddy McGinty's goat

The brave Irish guards you might think is a romance
They adopted the goat and they brought it out to France
The moment they landed they hear the bugle blow
They dropped their little . and they ran to meet the foe
The Germans all retreated happily they fled
They all tumbled over swearing they were dead
"Oh," said the Kaiser, "there's poison gas afloat."
'Twas only just the perfume came from Paddy McGinty's goat

Old Paddy's goat had a wonderful appetite
And one day for breakfast he ate some dynamite
A large box of matches he swallowed all serene
And on top of this he drank a quart of gasoline
He sat down by the fireplace he didn't give a hang
He swallowed down a spark and exploded with a bang
And if ever you go to heaven you can bet a one dollar note
If anyone there got whiskers on 'tis Paddy McGinty's goat


Sources: While the narrative is not the same, the plot is somewhat similar to that of "Bill Groggin's Goat," a song that is thought to be based on a Robert Service poem (see .).   Recorded by the Ennis Sisters (2003).

History: A U-boat reference in the text suggests a mid-20 th -century origin. Probably an Irish stage song.

Text notes: A comic tall tale about the trouble caused by Paddy's goat.

Tune notes: A 6/8 melody in a major key. The second half of each stanza moves to a higher register and introduces a flattened seventh.

All material on this webpage is copyright © 2004, Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive, Memorial University of Newfoundland. No unauthorized copying or use is permitted. For more information, follow this link.