John Kelly of Killanne

John Kelly of Killanne

John Kelly (Kelly of Killanne) (died 21 June 1798) was a United Irish leader who fought in the Irish Rebellion of 1798.

While Kelly was obviously well known to rebel and loyalist alike during the short duration of the Wexford rising, almost nothing is known of him outside this time. He was one of the leaders of the rebel victory at the Battle of Three Rocks which led to the capture of Wexford town but was later seriously wounded while leading a rebel column at the Battle of New Ross. He was moved to Wexford to recuperate but was dragged from his bed and hanged by British soldiers who allegedly decapitated his corpse and kicked his head through the streets following the fall of Wexford on 21 June 1798.


His exploits are commemorated in the famous Irish ballad "Kelly of Killanne" written by Patrick Joseph McCall (1861-1919). McCall also wrote the ballads "Boolavogue" and "Follow Me up to Carlow".

External links

* [ Leaders of 1798]
* [ words of the ballad with music]
* [ words of the ballad with explanation of background]

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