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Penny candle

Posted by Mike Coughlin on May 18, 2009 at 08:37

Just wanted to respond to the thread on "penny candle". Being a semi-ignorant fellow with Irish ancestors I know the phrase "penny candle" from the song "Galway Bay", which I am going to fess up, incidentally, brings a tear to my eye, both eyes. Just wanted to comment that this phrase probably, you think?, derives its meaning from how it is used? In the song it hits me as meaning simply an anachronism? such as one might say nowadays: send me a penny postcard. That's how it hit me. And I'll bet the song was written long after the fact by New Yorkers?