Tune of the Day: Miss Gunning's Delight
This reel is taken from Francis O'Neill's collection Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody, published in 1922. O'Neill notes:
Well-born and of surprising loveliness only equaled by their poverty, the famous Gunning sisters, Maria and Elizabeth, born in Roscommon and educated in Dublin, became Lady Coventry, and Dutchess of Hamilton respectively, in 1752, one year after their arrival in London. The marriages of “two Irish girls of no fortune who are declared the handsomest women alive” were great public events. “May the Luck of the Gunnings attend you” was a proverbial Irish blessing. The above setting of a tune composed in their honor, and printed in James Aird's Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, vol. 1, 1782 is doubtless the original.