This symposium is organised in association with the AHRC-funded research project on Irish song, which is based in the School of English Queen’s University Belfast, and which aims to develop an historical typology of Irish Song, from the earliest examples through to c. 1800. The project is wide-ranging in its scope, encompassing song texts written in Irish, English, French and Latin, and in a wide variety of forms and types (caoine, chant, hymns, as well as work songs, nursery rhymes, drinking songs, love songs and many more). Evidence for the songs is drawn from manuscripts, song-sheets and early printed books in libraries in Ireland and Britain but also from what we might learn from the transmission, performance and cultural memory of song. The symposium consists of a range of invited papers which represent the diversity of these traditions. It is anticipated that conversations and songs exchanged at the symposium will contribute towards the project’s aims of mapping and tracing the history and development of varieties of song tradition and practice in Ireland.