Da Bressay Lullaby



Baloo, balilli, baloo balilli

Baloo, balilli, balooli ba.


Verse 1:

Gae awa peerie fairies (x3)

Fae oor bairn noo.



Dan come da bonnie angels (x3)

Ta wir peerie bairn.



Dey’ll sheen ower da cradle (x3)

O wir peerie bairn.



bairn - child

da - the

dan - then

dey’ll - they will

fae - from

ower - over

peerie - little

sheen - shine

ta - to


This song combines fear of malevolent fairies who might come and harm or even steal away the baby, with a call to the angels for protection.  It might seem like an odd juxtaposition of pagan and Christian belief, but devout Christianity was not barrier to fear of fairies, who were thought to live alongside people and could be kept at bay with (relatively) modern innovations, such as iron or the Christian church.


For an audio version of this song click on the link:


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