The Life of Riley

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Dream of unleashing your inner Maverick? Counting against the veractiy of the story is the fuzziness of the date and location. Metacritic Reviews. Also, in , it hit the newsstands, when Dell Comics released "The Life of Riley" in comic book form. Photos Add Image Add an image Do you have any images for this title? Riley originally spelt "Reilly" referred to the character that appeared in a song written by Pat Rooney in The story on which it founded happened some sixty years ago; and, as the lover was a young Catholic farmer, and the lady's family of high Orange principles, it got a party character, which, no doubt, contributed its great populanty.

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Meaning of Idiom ‘Life Of Riley’

Reilly, of whom they speak so highly? Like most other Irish songs of the era, it played to the Irish audience - this one with a dash of anti-Chinese racism thrown in for luck the Chinese were 'Reilly's' principal competitors for manual work in the USA at the time :.

Life of riley

I'll have nothing but Irishman on the police Patrick's Day will be the fourth of July; I'll get me a thousand infernal machines, To teach the Chinese how to die,. He was called 'The Silver-Voiced Irish Tenor", although audiences must have been rather forgiving in those days, as surviving recordings of him sound like a knife being drawn across a plate.

He's money for to pay, So they let him have his way, The best in the house is none too good for Reilly. So, while the idea of a notional Irishman living the high life was current in late 19th century Ireland and America, the phrase 'the life of Riley' isn't found until the early 20th century. The source of the expression 'the life of Riley' has been the subject of much etymological research, which had pretty much drawn a blank until the miracle of modern-day searchable databases came to the rescue.

A scan of a copy of the newspaper the Dublin Weekly Nation, Saturday 14 October shows that the Riley and as it turns out it is Reilly, not Riley was the hero of a popular folk ballad, living exactly the life that would lead to the coining of the phrase we have been seeking. The lyric of the ballad is preceded by a reminiscence of the Irish nationalist politician Sir Charles Duffy:.

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Willy Reilly, says Sir Charles Duffy, was the first ballad I ever heard recited, and it made a painfully vivid impression on my mind. I have never forgotten the smallest incident of it. The story on which it founded happened some sixty years ago; and, as the lover was a young Catholic farmer, and the lady's family of high Orange principles, it got a party character, which, no doubt, contributed its great populanty. If we believe Duffy's account that Willy Reilly was a living, breathing s Irishman, then we have our man.

The Life Of Riley-The Lightning Seeds Lyrics

Duffy goes on to indicate the widespread knowledge of the song in the north of the island of Ireland:. Nurses and semptresses [seamstresses], the honorary guardians of national songs and legends, have taken it into special favour, and preserved its popularity.

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There's not enough evidence to be % certain of the origin of the phrase 'the life of Riley' but it is probable that it derives from the life of a real person - Willy. The Life of Riley was an American radio situation comedy series of the s that was adapted into a feature film, a s television series, and a

Here's the ballad, as printed in , which recounts the story of Willy Reilly running away with his hieress lover only to be caught and tried for abduction, eventually finding freedom and riches in his lover's arms - truly the life of Reilly:. The original 'ban' would make sense in the rhyming scheme, which rhymes it with 'land', 'band' etc.

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It's home then she was taken, and in her closet bound. Poor Reilly all in Sligo jail lay on the stony ground, 'Til at the bar of justice before the Judge he'd stand. For nothing but the stealing of his dear Coolen Bawn. I'm handcuffed like a murderer, and tied unto the ground.

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The lady with a tear began, and thus replied she, "The fault is none of Reilly's, the blame lies all on me, I forced him for to leave his place and come along with me, I loved him out of measure, which wrought our destiny. Out bespoke the noble Fox, the table he stood by, "Oh, gentlemen, consider on this extremity; To hang a man for love is a murder you may see, So spare the life of Reilly, let him leave this counterie.