The Jacobite period from 1710 to 1750 considerably influenced Irish minstrelsy, and some of the most delightful airs were adapted to Jacobite lyrics. “Seaghan buidhe,” “An Sean duine,” “Lament for Kilcash,” “Ormonde’s Lament,” “Morin ni Chullenain,” “All the Way to Galway” (the air of “Yankee Doodle"), “Caitlin ni Houlihan,” “Balance a straw” ("The Wearing of the Green"), “St. Patrick’s Day,” “Plancam Peirbhig,” are amongst the tunes in vogue at this period.
As early as 1685 the Hibernian Catch Club was established and still flourishes. Cecilian celebrations were held from 1727 to 1732, and a Dublin Academy of Music was founded in 1728. The Charitable and Musical Society (founded in 1723) built the Fishamble Street Music Hall in 1741, and assisted at the first performance of The Messiah, conducted by Handel himself, on 13th April, 1742. Kitty Clive, Peg Woffington, and Daniel Sullivan were noted Irish singers of this epoch, while John Clegg, Dr. Murphy, and Burke Thumoth were famous instrumentalists. In 1741 Richard Pockrich invented the Musical Glasses, for which Gluck wrote some pieces: it was afterwards improved by Benjamin Franklin. On the continent, Henry Madden was music director of the Chapel Royal at Versailles in 1744 (in succession to Campra), and was also canon of St. Quentin.
In 1764 the Earl of Mornington, Mus. D., was appointed first professor of music in Dublin University. A few years later Charles Clagget invented the valve-horn. Michael Kelly of Dublin was specially selected by Mozart to create the parts of Basilio and Don Curzio at the first performance of the opera of Figaro, on May 1st, 1786. Kane O’Hara, Samuel Lee, Owenson, Neale, Baron Dillon, Dr. Doyle, T.A. Geary, Mahon, and the Earl of Westmeath were distinguished musicians—while the fame of Carter, Mountain, Moorehead, and Dr. Cogan was not confined to Ireland.
Among native minstrels, Jerome Duigenan, Dominic Mongan, Denis Hempson, Charles Byrne, James Duncan, Arthur Victory, and Arthur O’Neill were celebrated as harpers. The Belfast meeting of 1792 revived the vogue of the national instrument. Nor was the bagpipe neglected. Even in America, in 1778, Lord Rawdon had a band of pipers, with Barney Thomson as Pipe Major. At home, Sterling, Jackson, MacDonnell, Moorehead, Kennedy, and Macklin sustained the reputation of this ancient instrument.
Ere the close of the eighteenth century John Field of Dublin was a distinguished pianist. He subsequently (1814) invented the nocturne, developed by Chopin. Sir John Stevenson (the arranger of the Irish Melodies), Tom Cooke, William Southwell (inventor of the damper action for pianofortes), Henry Mountain, Andrew Ashe (flautist), Barton, Rooke, and Bunting were world-famed.