The Plains of Boyle

Hornpipe, D, Traditional Irish

The Plains of Boyle, Irish Hornpipe, TrailJams Tune of the Week. Play it together January 22, 2023. Illustration copyright 2023 Jonathan Lay.

A sweet Irish hornpipe with some savory notes that add a bit of surprise to the melody.


Dots (Music Notation)

As always for traditional tunes, the musical notation and chords do not indicate the “right” way to play the tune, but are a useful reference. The sheet music here shows triplets in several places — triplets are part of the traditional ornamentation of hornpipes, as is varying where the triplets are placed each time the tune is played.

Sheet music and chords for The Plains of Boyle, traditional Irish hornpipe in D major. Arrangement by Jonathan Lay.
Play from the Dots
Slow tempo 55bpm
Moderate tempo 75bpm


Examples of sets that include this tune.

  • Dunphy’s Plains Hornpipe Set: Dunphy’s Hornpipe (G) / The Plains of Boyle (D)
  • Plains of Boyle ​/ ​Poll Ha’ Penny
  • The Stacks Of Barley / The Plains Of Boyle
  • The Plains of Boyle / The Friendly Visit
  • The Plains of Boyle / Off to California / The Derry Hornpipe
  • Kitty’s Wedding / The Plains of Boyle

References and Resources

For those who want to dig deeper, here are some other resources.