> Folk Music > Songs > The Old Triangle

The Old Triangle

[Dominic Behan]

Dominic Behan wrote The Old Triangle, a song about life in Mountjoy Prison in Dublin, for his brother Brendan Behan's play The Quare Fellow (1954). He also sang it on his Topic LP Irish Songs (1958) and EP Peelers and Prisoners (1963).

This video shows the Dubliners sing The Old Triangle in the German TV show Liedercircus in 1976:

The Pogues sang The Auld Triangle in 1984 on their album Red Roses for Me.

Swan Arcade sang The Old Triangle in 1990 on their Sygnet Records CD Full Circle.

Jon Boden sang The Auld Triangle as the 29 April 2011 entry of his project A Folk Song a Day.


Jon Boden sings The Auld Triangle

Oh! a hungry feeling, it came o'er me stealing
And the mice they were squealing in my prison cell—

Chorus (after each verse):
And the ould triangle, It went jingle jangle
All along the banks of the Royal Canal.

Now the screw was peeping while the lag was sleeping
And he was dreaming of his gal, Sal,

And to begin the morning, the warders bawling
“Ah, get up you bowsey and clean out your cell!”

Now in the female prison there are seventeen women
And it's among those women I would like to dwell;

Now the wind was rising and the sun declining
While I lay there pining in my prison cell.


See also the Mudcat Café thread The Ould Triangle.