Parting Glass – a bitter sweet goodbye
The lyrics of The Parting Glass date back at least 400 years to the early 17th century – probably before even that.
The themes of departure from friends and family are often found in Irish songs – emigration having split millions of families over the years.
The Parting Glass captures the sadness of separation but it isn’t a maudlin or depressing song.
The lyrics are positive and life-affirming
There’s an attractive and positive attitude throughout the lyrics that keeps resurfacing amid the sadness of the departure. This is what gives the song its strength and prevents it from becoming over sentimental or slipping into self-pity.
The Irish were accustomed to farewells. They knew life had to go on and that meant making the most of the situation. The words of The Parting Glass reflect that perfectly.
Parting Glass lyrics and chords
DmOh of all the moneyFe’er IChad,IDmspent it in good comCpany.And ofDmall the harm I’ve everCdone,DmAlas! itCwas toDmnone but me.AndFall I’ve done for want of witToGmmemory nowFI can’t recall,SoDmfill to me the partingCglass,GoodDmnight andCjoy beDmwith you all.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~DmOh, all the comrades ever IChad,They’reDmsorry for my going aCway.AndDmall the sweethearts ever IChad,DmThey’d wishCme oneDmmore day to stay.ButFsince it falls unto my lot,ThatGmI should riseFand you should not.IDmgently rise and softlyCcall,GoodDmnight andCjoy beDmwith you all.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~DmIf I had money eFnough toCspendAndDmleisure time to sit aCwhile,ThereDmis a fair maidFin thisCtown,ThatDmsoreCly has myDmheartbeguiled.HerFrosy cheeks and ruby lips,IGmown sheFhas my heart inCthrall,SoDmfill to me the partFingCglass,GoodDmnight andCjoy beDmwith you all.