864 Eidgen Brit, bishop of Cell Dara, scribe and anchorite, rested in the one hundred and thirteenth year of his age.
864 Móenach son of Condmach, abbot of Ros Cré, died.
864 Domnall grandson of Dúnlang, eligible to be king of Leinster, died.
864 Cermait son of Catharnach, king of Corcu Bascinn, died.
865 Kl. Tadc son of Diarmait, king of Uí Ceinnselaig, was killed by his own kinsmen.
A slaughter of the Norwegians by Flann son of Conaing, king of Cianachta.
866 In this year Áed son of Niall, king of Ireland, massacred the Norwegians and harried them all. Áed had a great victory over the Norwegians at Loch Febail. The learned related that it was his wife who most incited Áed against the Norwegiansnamely Land, daughter of Dúnlang: and she was the one who was Máel Sechlainn's wife previously, and the mother of Máel Sechlainn's son, i.e. Flann. She was the mother of Cennétig son of Gáethíne, king of Loíches. Now the ills that the Norwegians suffered this year are noteworthy, but the greatest they encountered were from Áed Findliath son of Niall.
866 The Norwegians laid waste and plundered Foirtriu, and they took many hostages with them as pledges for tribute; for a long time afterwards they continued to pay them tribute.
866 A slaughter of the foreigners at Mendroichet by Cennétig son of Gáethíne, king of Loíches, and by the northern Osraige.
867 At this time came the Aunites (that is, the Danes) with innumerable armies to York, and they sacked the city, and they overcame it; and that was the beginning of harassment and misfortunes for the Britons; for it was not long before this that there had been every war and every trouble in Norway, and this was the source of that war in Norway: two younger sons of Albdan, king of Norway, drove out the eldest son, i.e. Ragnall son of Albdan, for fear that he would seize the kingship of Norway after their father. So Ragnall came with his three sons to the Orkneys. Ragnall stayed there then, with his youngest son. The older sons, however, filled with arrogance and rashness, proceeded with a large army, having mustered that army from all quarters, to march against the Franks and Saxons. They thought that their father would return to Norway immediately after their departure.
Then their arrogance and their youthfulness incited them to voyage across the Cantabrian Ocean (i.e. the sea that is between Ireland and Spain) and they reached Spain, and they did many evil things in Spain, both destroying and plundering. After that they proceeded across the Gaditanean Straits (i.e. the place where the Irish Sea sic goes into the surrounding
p.121ocean), so that they reached Africa, and they waged war against the Mauritanians, and made a great slaughter of the Mauritanians. However, as they were going to this battle, one of the sons said to the other, Brother, he said, we are very foolish and mad to be killing ourselves going from country to country throughout the world, and not to be defending our own patrimony, and doing the will of our father, for he is alone now, sad and discouraged in a land not his own, since the other son whom we left along with him has been slain, as has been revealed to me. It would seem that that was revealed to him in a dream vision; and his Ragnall's other son was slain in battle; and moreover, the father himself barely escaped from that battlewhich dream proved to be true.
While he was saying that, they saw the Mauritanian forces coming towards them, and when the son who spoke the above words saw that, he leaped suddenly into the battle, and attacked the king of the Mauritanians, and gave bim a blow with a great sword and cut off his hand. There was hard fighting on both sides in this battle, and neither of them won the victory from the other in that battle. But all returned to camp, after many among them had been slain. However, they challenged each other to come to battle the next day.
The king of the Mauritanians escaped from the camp and fled in the night after his hand had been cut off. When the morning came, the Norwegians seized their weapons and readied themselves firmly and bravely for the battle. The Mauritanians, however, when they noticed that their king had departed, fled after they had been terribly slain. Thereupon the Norwegians swept across the country, and they devastated and burned the whole land. Then they brought a great host of them captive with them to Ireland, i.e. those are the black men. For Mauri is the same as nigri; 'Mauritania' is the same as nigritudo. Hardly one in three of the Norwegians escaped, between those who were slain, and those who drowned in the Gaditanian Straits. Now those black men remained in Ireland for a long time. Mauritania is located across from the Balearic Islands.
865 Kl. An eclipse of the sun on the calends of January.
865 Cellach son of Ailill, abbot of Cell Dara and of Í, fell asleep in the country of the Picts.
865 Mainchíne, bishop of Lethglenn, rested.
865 Tuathal son of Artgus, chief bishop of Foirtriu and abbot of Dún Caillen, died.
865 The slaying of Colmán son of Dúnlang, king of Fotharta Tíre; he was killed by his own children.
865 Tigernach son of Fócarta, king of the men of Brega, died.
866 In this year Earl Tomrar came from Luimnech to Cluain Ferta (he was a very strong, very rough, merciless man of the Norwegians), thinking to take great spoils in that church. However, he did not get what he expected, because a warning arrived a little while ahead of him, and the people fled promptly before him in boats, and some others into the marshes, others into the church. Those whom he found in the enclosure and in the graveyard he killed. Now Cormac son of Élóthach, learned sage of Ireland, successor of Sen-Chiarán of Saigir, was in that church. Thus God and Brénaind saved them. That Tomrar, moreover, died of insanity within a year, Brénaind having performed a miracle upon him.
?866 In that year the Norwegian kings went into Munster with huge armies, and they plundered Munster severely; all the same, they were badly defeated there. For Cennétig son of Gáethíne, king of Loíches, came. (He was a son of Land, daughter of Dúnlang, who was also the mother of Flann son of Máel Sechlainn, and she was then the wife of Áed son of Niall, king of Temair.) This son of Gáethíne was the most savage and triumphant man against the foreigners in Ireland at this time. This Cennétig came, then, with the Loíchsi and many of the Osraige along with him, to the encampment of the Norwegians, and they slaughtered their noblemen in the middle of the camp. It was then that Cennétig saw one of his own people, with two Norwegians trying to cut off his head, and he came quickly to save him, and he beheaded those two men and saved his own attendant. Cennétig proceeded with victory and triumph.
Then the raiding party of Norwegians, which had great spoils, attacked Cennétig. When they had heard those noblemen being slain, they had left their raid and their booty, and had come hard and actively against Cennétig. Foreign, barbarous cries were raised there, and the noise of many war trumpets, and a crowd were saying Núi, nú! Then many arrows were loosed between them, and short spears, and finally they took to their heavy and hard-smiting swords. Nevertheless, God was helping the son of Gáethíne and his troops; the Norwegians were overcome, and left the place of battle; they went in rout after their bloody defeat.
A certain group did not flee far away because of their weaknesshaving suffered great famineor because they were ashamed to run away. When they saw the army of the son of Gáethíne gathering up the riches that they had abandoned, they came after them. When the son of Gáethíne
p.125saw that, he charged at them as a wolf attacks sheep, and they fled into the bog and were all killed in the bog, and dogs devoured their corpses.
Then these people, the son of Gáethíne and his party, made a great slaughter of the noblemen of the Norwegian king in another place in Munsterthat is, of the horsetroops of the Norwegian king. In revenge the Norwegians killed a great host of clerics who were ... themselves, but this was after unction and penance.
At that time Máel Ciaráin gained great fame among the Irish from his frequent victories over the Norwegians.
866 In this year Earl Tomrar, the enemy of Brénaind, died of insanity at Port Manann, and he could see Brénaind killing him.