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The Metrical Dindshenchas

Author: [unknown]

File Description

Edward Gwynn

translated by Edward Gwynn

Electronic edition compiled by Beatrix Färber, Saorla Ó Corráin

Funded by University College, Cork and
The Connacht Project, the Centre for the Study of Human Settlement and Political Change, NUI Galway and
the HEA via the LDT Project

2. Second draft.

Extent of text: 11435 words


CELT: Corpus of Electronic Texts: a project of University College, Cork
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(2004) (2008)

Distributed by CELT online at University College, Cork, Ireland.
Text ID Number: T106500B

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Available with prior consent of the CELT programme for purposes of academic research and teaching only.


Copyright for the printed edition lies with the School of Celtic Studies (Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies).


Todd Lecture Series
Text ID Number: 9


    Manuscript sources
  1. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, MS 1229, olim 23 E 25, al. Leabhar na hUidhre.
  2. Dublin, Trinity College Library, MS 1339 olim H. 2. 18, al. the Book of Leinster, pp. 151–170 and 191–216 of facsimile.
  3. Rennes, Bibliothèque Municipale, The Rennes MS, ff. 90–125.
  4. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, MS 23 P 12, The Book of Ballymote, pp. 349–410.
  5. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, MS 23 P 2, al. the Book of Lecan, pp. 461–525.
  6. Trinity College Dublin, The Yellow Book of Lecan, H 2 16, pp. 438–455 of facsimile.
  7. Trinity College Dublin, MS H 3 3 (1322).
  8. Trinity College Dublin, MS H 2 15 b (1317), pp. 157–end (a copy of H).
  9. Trinity College Dublin, MS E 4 1 (1436).
  10. Trinity College Dublin, MS H 2 4, pp. 462–590 (an 18th cent copy of B).
  11. Trinity College Dublin, MS H 1 15 (1289), pp. 409–532 (an 18th cent copy of B).
  12. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, The Book of Huí Maine, Stowe, D II 1, ff. 143–169.
  13. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, Stowe, D II 2.
  14. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, Stowe, B II 2. A fragment.
  15. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, Stowe, B III 1.
  16. Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, Reeves, 832, pp. 61–197.
  1. The poems on Ráth Essa, Faffand and Almu I were published in the Todd Lecture Series, vol. 7; the poem on Inber n-Ailbine in Atlantis 4, 235, from materials left by O'Curry; the poem on Lagin II appeared in Stokes' Bodleian Dindshenchas, p. 7, and in Atkinsons's and Bernard's Liber Hymnorum. .
    Secondary literature: a selection
  1. Journals devoted to the study of names and place names such as BUPNS, 1st and 2nd series, and Ainm have their own webpages at
  2. James Norris Brewer, The beauties of Ireland: being original delineations, topographical, historical, and biographical of each county. 2 vols. 1823–26. [Contains only the province of Leinster and the county of Cork with general introduction. No more published.]
  3. G. H. Orpen, 'Ptolemy's map of Ireland'. Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 4th series 24 (1894) 115–28.
  4. Alexander Bugge, Caithreim Chellachain Chaisil. The victorious career of Cellachan of Cashel or the Wars between the Irishmen and the Norsemen in the middle of the tenth century. With translation and notes. Christiana, 1905.
  5. H. Cameron Gillies, The place-names of Argyll, London 1906.
  6. Patrick Power, The place names of Decies, London 1907.
  7. Edmund Ignatius Hogan, Onomasticon Goedelicum, Locorum et tribuum hiberniae et scotiae. An index, with identifications, to the Gaelic names of places and tribes. Dublin and London 1910. An electronic edition which was compiled by the Locus Project, na Ranna Gaeilge, University College Cork, is available online at
  8. Patrick Power, Place-names and antiquities of South East Cork, Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy, vol. 34, section C, nos. 1 and 9, 1917–18.
  9. Rudolf Thurneysen, Die irische Helden- und Königsage bis zum siebzehnten Jahrhundert (Halle a. S. 1921), reprinted Hildesheim (Olms) 1980, 36–45.
  10. Paul Walsh, 'The earliest records of Fermanagh', Irish Ecclesiastical Record, 5th series 34 (1924) 344–55.
  11. Liam Price, Place names of County Wicklow: the Irish form and meaning of parish, townland, and local names, Wexford 1935.
  12. Éamonn O'Tuathail, 'Notes on some Irish place names'. Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 67:1 (1937) 77–88.
  13. C. Ó Lochlainn, 'Roadways in ancient Ireland', in: Féil-sgríbhinn Eóin Mhic Néill, ed. J. Ryan (Dublin 1940) 465–74.
  14. Liam Price, The place-names of County Wicklow. 7 pts. Dublin 1945–67.
  15. Thomas F. O'Rahilly, On Ptolemy's geography of Ireland, in: Early Irish History and Mythology, Dublin 1946 (repr. 1999) 1–42; 453–66.
  16. Edward O'Toole, Place names of County Carlow, Carlow 1947.
  17. Hugh Shearman, Ulster (The County Books series), 1950.
  18. Julius Pokorny, Die Geographie Irlands bei Ptolemaios, Zeitschrift für Celtische Philologie 24 (1954) 94–120.
  19. Paul Walsh, The place-names of Westmeath, Dublin 1957.
  20. James J. Tierney, Ptolemy's map of Scotland, Journal of Hellenic studies 79 (1959) 132–148.
  21. Liam Ó Buachalla, 'An early 14th century placename list for Anglo-Norman Cork', Dinnseanchas 2 (1966) 1–12.
  22. K. W. Nicholls, 'Some place-names from 'The Red Book of the earls of Kildare''. Dinnseanchas 3 (1968–69) 25–37, 61–62.
  23. K. W. Nicholls, 'Some place-names from Pontificia Hibernica'. Dinnseanchas 3:4 (1969) 85–98.
  24. T. J. Hughes, 'Town and baile in Irish place-names'. In: Irish geographical studies in honour of E. Estyn Evans, eds. N. Stephens, R.E. Glasscock (Belfast 1970) 244–58.
  25. Margaret Gelling, 'The Place-Names of the Isle of Man', Journal of the Manx Museum, 7:87 (1971) 168–75.
  26. Charles Thomas, 'The Irish settlements in post-Roman western Britain: A survey of the evidence', Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall, ns, 6:4 (1972) 251–74.
  27. Éamonn de Hóir, 'The anglicisation of Irish place-names', Onoma, 17 (1972) 192–204.
  28. Deirdre Flanagan, 'Settlement terms in Irish place-names', Onoma, 17 (1972) 157–72.
  29. Magne Oftedal, 'Scandinavian place-names in Ireland', in: Bo Almquist, David Greene (eds.), Proceedings of the Seventh Viking Congress, Dublin, 15–21 August 1973 (Dublin 1976) 125–33.
  30. C. Bowen, 'A historical inventory of the Dindshenchas', Studia Celtica 10 (1975–76) 113–137.
  31. Myles Dillon, 'The Irish Settlements in Wales'. Celtica, 12 (1977) 1–11.
  32. Breandán Ó Ciobháin, Toponomia Hiberniae 1, Barúntacht Dhún Thuaidh (Barony of Dunkerron North). Dublin 1978.
  33. John Field, Place-names of Great Britain and Ireland, Newton Abbot 1980.
  34. Tomás Ó Concheanainn, 'The three forms of Dinnshenchas Érenn', Journal of Celtic Studies 3 (1981) 88–131.
  35. Thomas Fanning, 'Early Christian sites in the barony of Corkaguiney', in: Donnchadh Ó Corráin, (ed.), Irish antiquity: essays and studies presented to Professor M.J. O'Kelly (Cork 1981) 241–46.
  36. Nollaig Ó Muraíle, 'The barony names of Fermanagh and Monaghan', Clogher Record: Journal of the Clogher Historical Society 9 (1984), 387–402; 11:3 (1982–5) 387–402.
  37. Deirdre Flanagan, 'The Christian impact on early Ireland: place-names evidence', in: Próinséas Ní Chatháin & Michael Richter (eds.), Irland und Europa–Ireland and Europe. Die Kirche im Frühmittelalter–the early Church (Stuttgart 1984) 25–51.
  38. Nollaig Ó Muraíle, Mayo Places: Their Names and Origins. 1985.
  39. K. W. Nicholls, 'Medieval Leinster dynasties and families: three topographical notes', Peritia 5 (1986) 409–15.
  40. Breandán S. Mac Aodha, 'The element áth/ford in Irish place-names'. Nomina 11 (1987) 115–22.
  41. Proinseas Mac Cana, Place-names and mythology in Irish tradition', in: G. W. MacLennan (ed.), Proceedings of the first North-American Congress of Celtic Studies, Ottawa 1988, 319–341.
  42. Helmut Jäger, 'Medieval landscape terms of Ireland: the evidence of Latin and English documents', in: John Bradley (ed.), Settlement and society in medieval Ireland: studies presented to F. X. Martin, OSA (Kilkenny 1988) 277–90.
  43. Liam Mac Mathúna, 'The topographical vocabulary of Irish: patterns and implications'. Ainm 4 (1989–90) 144–164.
  44. Breandán S. Mac Aodha, 'Lake-names on Mercator's map of Ireland'. Nomina, 12 (1989 for 1988/9), 11–16.
  45. Dónall Mac Giolla Easpaig, 'The place-names of Rathlin Island'. Ainm 4 (1989–90) 3–89.
  46. T. S. Ó Máille, 'Irish place-names in -as, -es, -is, -os, -us'. Ainm 4 (1989–90) 125–143.
  47. Diarmuid Ó Murchadha, 'A reconsideration of some place-names from miscellaneous Irish annals', Ainm 4 (1989–90) 180–193.
  48. Jeffrey Spittal, John Field, A reader's guide to the place-names of the United Kingdom: a bibliography of publications, 1920-1989, on the place-names of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, The Isle of Man, and the Channel Islands. Stamford, 1990.
  49. A. J. Hughes, 'Irish place-names: some perspectives, pitfalls, procedures and potential'. Seanchas Ardmhacha: Journal of the Armagh Diocesan Historical Society, 14:2 (1991) 116–148.
  50. Cathal Dallat, 'Townlands: their origin and significance', in: Tony Canavan (ed.), Every stoney acre has a name: a celebration of the townland in Ulster (Belfast 1991) 3–10.
  51. A. S. MacShamhrain, 'Placenames as indicators of settlement', Archaeology Ireland, 5:3 (1991) 19-21.
  52. Alan Mac An Bhaird, 'Ptolemy revisited', Ainm 5 (1991–93) 1–20.
  53. Diarmuid Ó Murchadha, 'A reconsideration of some placenames from 'The Annals of Innishfallen'', Ainm 5 (1991–93) 21–32.
  54. Place-names of Northern Ireland, general editor Gerard Stockman. 6 Vols. [v. 1. County Down I, Newry and South-West Down, eds. Gregory Toner and Mícheál B. Ó Mainnín; v. 2. County Down II, The Ards, eds. A.J. Hughes and R.J. Hannan; v. 3. County Down III, The Mournes, ed. Mícheál B. Ó Mainnín; v. 4. County Antrim I, The baronies of Toome, ed. Patrick McKay; v. 5. County Derry I, The Moyola Valley, ed. Gregory Toner; v. 6. County Down IV, North-West Down, Iveagh, ed. Kay Muhr;.] Belfast: Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen's University of Belfast, 1992–1996.
  55. Place-names of Northern Ireland, general editor Nollaig Ó Muraíle. Vol. 7: County Antrim II, Ballycastle and North-East Antrim, ed. Fiachra Mac Gabhann. Belfast: Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen's University of Belfast, 1997.
  56. Art Ó Maolfabhail, 'The role of toponymy in the Ordnance Survey of Ireland', Études celtiques 29 (1992) 319–325.
  57. Gillian Fellows Jensen, 'Scandinavian place-names of the Irish sea province', in: J. A. Graham-Campbell (ed.), Viking treasure from the north-west: the Cuerdale hoard in its context (National Museums and Galleries on Merseyside Occasional Papers 5) (Liverpool 1992) 31–42.
  58. Tomás G. Ó Canann, 'Áth Uí Chanannáin and the toponomy of medieval Mide'. Ríocht na Mídhe [Journal of the County Meath Historical Society] 8:4 (1992–93) 78–83.
  59. Michael B. Ó Mainnin, 'The mountain names of County Down'. Nomina 17 (1994) 31–53.
  60. Deirdre & Laurence Flanagan, Irish place-names. Dublin 1994.
  61. Adrian Room, A dictionary of Irish place-names. Revised edition. Belfast 1994.
  62. Dónall Mac Giolla Easpaig, 'Placenames and early settlement in County Donegal', in: William Nolan, Liam Ronayne, Mairead Dunlevy (eds.), Donegal: history & society. Interdisciplinary essays on the history of an Irish county (Dublin 1995) 149–182.
  63. Nollaig Ó Muraíle, 'Recent publications relating to Irish place-names', Ainm 6 (1994–95) 115–122.
  64. Micheál Ó Braonáin, Príomhshruth Éireann. Luimneach 1994. [A poem by a Roscommon poet on the River Shannon (1794) listing 30 tributaries and over 300 place-names.]
  65. Diarmuid Ó Murchadha, 'A reconsideration of some place-names from 'The annals of Connacht'' Ainm 6 (1994–95) 1–31.
  66. Dónall Mac Giolla Easpaig, 'Early ecclesiastical settlement names of county Galway', In: Gerard Moran, (ed.) Galway: history & society: interdisciplinary essays on the history of an Irish county (Dublin 1996) 795–815.
  67. Simon Taylor, 'Place-names and the early church in eastern Scotland', in: Barbara Elizabeth Crawford, (ed.), Scotland in dark age Britain, (Aberdeen 1996) 93–110.
  68. Brian Ó Cuív, 'Dinnshenchas: the literary exploitation of Irish place-names', Ainm 4 (1989–90) 90–106.
  69. Tomás Ua Ciarrbhaic, 'North Kerry placenames', The Kerry Magazine 7 (1996) 33–34.
  70. Diarmuid Ó Murchadha, 'A reconsideration of some place-names from the Annals of Tigernach', Ainm 7 (1996–97) 1–27.
  71. Gregory Toner, 'A reassessment of the element Cuilleann', Ainm 7 (1996–97) 94–101.
  72. Gregory Toner, 'The backward nook: Cúil and Cúl in Irish placenames', Ainm 7 (1996–97) 113–117.
  73. Kay Muhr, 'The Northern Ireland Placename Project 1987–97', Ainm 7 (1996–97) 118–119.
  74. Conleth Manning, 'Daire Mór identified'. Peritia 11 (1997) 359–69.
  75. Roibeard Ó Maolalaigh, 'Place-names as a resource for the historical linguist', in Simon Taylor, The uses of place-names (St. John's House Papers, 7) (Edinburgh: Scottish Cultural, 1998) 12–53.
  76. Seosamh Ó Dufaigh, 'Medieval Monaghan: the evidence of the placenames'. Clogher Record: Journal of the Clogher Historical Society, 16:3 (1999) 7–28.
  77. Patrick McKay, A dictionary of Ulster place-names. Belfast: Queen's University of Belfast, Institute of Irish Studies, 1999.
  78. Nollaig Ó Muraíle, 'The place-names of Clare Island', in: Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh, Kevin Whelan, (eds.), New survey of Clare Island, volume I: history and cultural landscape (Dublin 1999) 99–141.
  79. Gregory Toner, 'The definite article in Irish place-names'. Nomina, 22 (1999) 5–24.
  80. Sharon Arbuthnot, Short cuts to etymology: placenames in Cóir Anmann, Ériu 50 (1999) 79–86.
  81. Patrick McKay, A dictionary of Ulster place-names, Belfast 1999.
  82. Kevin Murray, 'Fr Edmund Hogan's 'Onomasticon Goedelicum', ninety years on: reviewers and users', Ainm 8 (1998–2000) 65–75.
  83. Art Ó Maolfabhail,'Ar lorg na Breatnaise in Éirinn', Ainm 8 (1998–2000) 76–92.
  84. Diarmuid Ó Murchadha, 'A reconsideration of some place-names from 'Fragmentary Annals of Ireland'', Ainm 8 (1998–2000) 41–51.
  85. Gregory Toner, 'Settlement and settlement terms in medieval Ireland: Ráth and Lios'. Ainm 8 (1998–2000) 1–40.
  86. Michael J. Bowman, Place names and antiquities of the Barony of Duhallow, ed. by Jean J. MacCarthy, Tralee 2000.
  87. Eoghan Ó Mórdha, 'The placenames in the Book of Cuanu', in: Alfred P. Smyth (ed.), Seanchas: studies in early and medieval Irish archaeology, history and literature in honour of Francis J. Byrne (Dublin 2000) 189–91.
  88. Kay Muhr, 'Territories, people and place names in Co. Armagh', in: A. J. Hughes, William Nolan (eds.), Armagh: history & society: interdisciplinary essays on the history of an Irish county (Dublin: Geography Publications, 2001) 295–332.
  89. Kay Muhr, 'The early place-names of County Armagh'. Seanchas Ardmhacha: Journal of the Armagh Diocesan Historical Society, 19:1 (2002) 1–54.
  90. Historical Dictionary of Gaelic Placenames/Foclóir Stairiúil Áitainmneacha na Gaeilge, London: Irish Texts Society 2003. [Volume 1 of Hogan's revised Onomasticon.]
  91. Petra S. Hellmuth, 'The Dindshenchas and Irish literary tradition', in: John Carey, Máire Herbert and Kevin Murray (eds.), Cín Chille Chúile, Texts, Saints and Places, Essays in honour of Pádraig Ó Riain, Aberystwyth 2004.
  92. Pádraig Ó Riain, Diarmuid Ó Murchadha and Kevin Murray, Historical Dictionary of Gaelic Placenames, Fascicle 3 [C-Ceall Fhursa] (London: Irish Texts Society 2008).
  93. Rudolf Thurneysen, Die irische Helden- und Königsage bis zum siebzehnten Jahrhundert (Halle 1921; reprinted Hildesheim: Olms 1980) passim.
  94. Whitley Stokes (ed. & tr.), 'The prose tales in the Rennes dindshenchas', Revue Celtique 15 (1894) 272–336, 418–84; 16 (1895) 31–83, 135–67, 269–312.
    The edition used in the digital edition
  1. The Metrical Dindshenchas. in Volume 2Edward Gwynn (ed), Second reprint [vii + 108 pp.] Dublin Institute for Advanced StudiesDublin (1991) (first published 1906) (reprinted 1941)


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CELT: Corpus of Electronic Texts

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The present text represents odd pages 3–85 of the volume. All editorial introduction, apparatus, extensive notes and footnotes have been omitted. The Irish text is available as a separate file. Editorial addenda and corrigenda from volume 5, pp. 126–130, are integrated in the electronic edition.

Editorial Declaration


Text proofread twice. Text supplied by the editor is tagged sup resp="EG". Corrections are tagged corr sic resp="EG"; where the emendation is tentative, the corresponding 'cert' attribute has been allocated a value of 40 per cent. Corrections suggested in writings by Kuno Meyer, Rudolf Thurneysen and , Patrick Dinneen are marked.


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div0=the whole text; div1=the volume; div2=the individual poem; page-breaks and line-breaks are marked. The text is based mainly on the Book of Leinster. Folio numbers of the manuscript are not indicated in the printed edition. Passages in verse are marked by poem, stanza and line.

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Dates are standardized in the ISO form yyyy-mm-dd.


Names are not tagged. A few terms in Irish are tagged as such.

Canonical References

This text uses the DIV2 element to represent the poem.

Profile Description

Created: Translation by Edward Gwynn [for details of Irish text see file G106500B]. (c. 1905)

Use of language

Language: [EN] The translation is in English.
Language: [GA] Some words in Old and Middle Irish are retained.

Revision History

Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition: T106500B

The Metrical Dindshenchas: Author: [unknown]


Rath Esa

  1. Here settled, as we believe,
    after coming to a goal eagerly sought,
    the daughter of Eochaid Airem
    and of Etain the noble.
  2. 5] Esa was the name of the maid,
    from her is Rath Esa called:
    a hundred of every sort of beast without abatement
    were brought by her, it was a choice tribute.
  3. Midir's fosterling the fair woman was
    10] with wine and mead to drink;
    nine years did the maiden spend
    at Bri Leith with the spirit of a handmaid.
  4. In spite of Eochaid Airem
    Midir bore off the festive Etain
    15] from Fremand, though bright of brow;
    so she left mournful Banba.
  5. Said Codal of the withered foot:
    "Ye need not to search for her;
    in Bri Leith is the beginning of our search;
    20] 'tis thither she has gone a-wooing."
  6. By the side of Eochaid Airem
    came the hosts of noble Erin
    from Fremand, though bright of brow,
    to sack bright Bri Leith.

  7. p.5

  8. 25] Nine years were they about that sacking;
    its speed was none too great.
    Midir at this forcible entry,
    he was busy destroying the work.
  9. After the sack of the fairy fort
    30] there came fifty hardy men,
    (shapely was that tribe)
    to talk with the lance-bearing kings.
  10. Then were brought on a Wednesday
    ('twas a famous tale, I have heard)
    35] to Eochaid, in form like Etain,
    thrice fifty women, excellent might!
  11. From them he chose out
    his own right pure daughter;
    false was the declaration Midir made
    40] that this was the bargain agreed upon.
  12. She it was bare Mes Buachalla
    mother of friendly Conaire,
    (it was a subtle ... affair),
    she reared her to be over Eber's high race.
  13. 45] When Eochaid went again
    to sack bright Bri Leith,
    he bore off his wife, having reunited with her,
    from Midir–glorious feat!
  14. 'Twas then he demanded
    50] his honour–fine from Midir–
    did Eochaid the upright, the fair and strong–
    and obtained it after award by law.

  15. p.7

  16. This is the fourfold demand
    that Eochaid Airem made,
    55] with many a distinguished company,
    with tale of shields and swords:
  17. To build a causeway across the bog of Lamraige,
    to plant a wood growing wild over Brefne,
    to clear stones from the Bottoms of great Mide,
    60] and to set rushes over Tebtha.
  18. "O daughter, demand of me,"
    said Eochaid; "tell me now
    which fortress of my fortresses thou desirest,
    and it shall be bestowed on thee by me."
  19. 65] Then it was she chose
    Rath Esa, a precinct with a fair lawn,
    a seat whence she would keep watch,
    whence she might see the three fortresses.
  20. The Mound of Brug of the roads,
    70] one of three fortresses built aright, fit for a hundred,
    Duma Giall in Tara,
    fair Dun Crimthaind in Howth.
  21. Then was the Rath bestowed
    by Eochaid–a word without delusion–
    75] with everything she demanded
    with plenty of treasures therein.
  22. Midir after the expiry of truce
    came about the bold award
    to Eochaid once more,
    80] about the same just business.

  23. p.9

  24. Midir prayed the noble prince
    for the strong keep where was begotten1
    Sigmall, his daughter's son,
    who dwells in noble Sid Nenta.
  25. 85] Ogniad was his mother's name;
    she was daughter to Midir;
    not evil was her disposition
    though she knew not rule nor law.
  26. Etain of the bright brows was borne
    90] to the West, though proud was her birth,
    with the head of Eochaid Airem;
    so she was in Sid Nenta beyond the water.
  27. In the West is the mistress of numerous hosts
    with Sigmall,–a fairy place without delusion–
    95] with the valorous grandson of Midir;
    and she has not returned hither.


Brug Na Bóinde I

  1. Bright is it here, O plain of Mac ind Oc!
    wde is thy road with traffic of hundreds;
    thou hast covered many a true prince
    of the race of every king that has possessed thee.
  2. 5] Every bright wonder hath adorned thee,
    O clear shining plain with scores of hosts,
    O lucent land of grass and waggons,
    O virgin mead of birds and milking-places!
  3. The house of Mac ind Oc above thy stead,
    10] a royal sod with true hospitality;
    there come readily above thy brown stream
    hostages from the fairy-hills of all Erin thither.
  4. The daughter of bold Pharaoh lies on thy floor
    a kind princess, precious was the diadem;
    15] over her was set the tower in that place,
    not sparing was the graving-tool over her head.
  5. I see the clear pool of Fiacc of the warriors
    west of thee,—not feeble the deed—
    till the day of Doom—mighty boast—
    20] shall he abide on the slope of the royal rath.
  6. Here slept a married pair
    after the battle of Mag Tuired yonder,
    the great lady and the swart Dagda:
    not obscure is their dwelling there.

  7. p.13

  8. 25] The Grave of the Matha after his slaying
    is plain to see on thee, O Brag, studded with horses:
    It was his bone that polluted the sea,
    whence pleasant Inber Colptha is named.
  9. The Hide of the Cow of undying Boadan
    30] over the cheek of his yellow-white stone:
    the Precinct of the staunch keen warriors
    about the eastern level of a noble sanctuary.
  10. At the Grave of the gentle Seagulls
    it is there was boasted the deed–
    35] great the feat of pride that assigns
    the slaying of Finn to the soldiery of the fierce Luagni.
  11. In thee was born a beguiling boy,
    Cellach, who plundered the plain on his track;
    it was one able to sustain a household that ruled thee,
    40] and died in thee a death of pride.
  12. O beaked bark of the strong towers,
    the sea-tide visits thy stead:
    from the days of Crimthand Nia to Niall
    thou wast the burying-place of the fair-haired warriors.
  13. 45] Fintan Feradach, of bloody battles,
    possessed thy land, the strong prince;
    Tuathal Techtmar, lord of our clans,
    thy bare sepulchral soil sustains.

  14. p.15

  15. Fedelmed the Lawgiver is in thy tale;
    50] he was a warlike wight on every chase;
    thou art not unlovely in thy land
    thou hidest Conn the just, the hundred-fighter.
  16. There came not Art, highest in rank,
    round whom rode troops on the battlefield;
    55] he found a grave proud and lofty,
    the champion of the heroes, in Luachair Derg.
  17. There came not Cormac free from sorrow:
    after receiving the Truth (he affirmed it)
    he found repose above limpid Boyne
    60] on the shore at Rossnaree.
  18. Cairpre Lifechair lies on thy soil,
    Fiachu Sraptine noble and famous,
    Muiredach Tírech from the Hill,
    the king Eochu father of Niall.
  19. 65] There came not Niall (a cry that is not false)
    unlucky for him the course he rowed!
    after going seven times to Scotland
    the place where his grave is was known.
  20. Thereafter came the pure Faith
    70] to Mag Fail, a law that came not too soon,
    so that each lies in burial-grounds of holy men,
    to sever them from iniquity and sin.

  21. p.17

  22. Thou hidest a brood bold and kind,
    O plain of the son of the swift Dagda:
    75] who did not perform the worship of the great God;
    it is worse for them where they are in torment.
  23. They are transient, thou abidest:
    every believing band rides around thee:
    as for them, their wisdom has befooled them;
    80] thou shalt attain a noble age.
  24. Boyne, a spot right green and bright,
    The Mana and wholesome Séil pass by thee
    ... from you of the proud grandson
    of Senbec from the stead of noble poesy.
  25. 85] Congalach the ilustrious lord of warriors,2
    swift is his blow, noble his assembly.
    It is a fold of glorious chieftains, as far as the sea,
    it is a kennel of high-bred whelps, it is glorious.


Brug Na Bóinde II

  1. O nobles of Breg, a might that is not deceitful,
    with featful points (royal is the road):
    know ye the story of every lord
    that is here in the Brug of the Mac ind Oc?
  2. 5] Behold the fairy mound before your eyes:
    it is plain for you to see, it is a king's dwelling,
    it was built by the harsh Dagda:
    it was a shelter, it was a keep renowned for strength.
  3. Behold the Bed of the red Dagda:
    10] on the slope, without rough rigour;
    he paid noble court after the chase
    to a fair woman free from eld and sorrow.
  4. Behold the two Paps of the king's consort
    here beyond the mound west of the fairy mansion:
    15] the spot where Cermait the fair was born,
    behold it on the way, not a far step;
  5. Whither came the wife of the son of noble Nemed
    to a tryst to meet the swift Dagda,
    and her dog after her,
    20] though it was a long journey from afar:
  6. Whither came Midir from Bri Leith
    to bear off the prince, it was a lucky find;
    so he bore the Mac ind Oc from the ford
    with a shield in his protection, though he was weary.

  7. p.21

  8. 25] Thereafter was brought, a clever compact,
    the boy, on that day nine full years after
    to his father, it was a fitting command,
    to the loved Dagda at his house.
  9. Entertainment was made by him for the King
    30] in the mound by means of lasting deception;
    thence is named,–it is not a question without a key–
    Duma Treisc before the eyes of the hosts.
  10. Thereafter the stern Dagda refused his request,
    to whom belonged the keep, it was no abode of grief:–
    35] so he dwelt in Ochan, a journey with lamentation,
    after warlike labour, after a time of carousing.
  11. The grave of Esclam, pilgrimage revered,
    where good men used to cast lots:
    a sward with a brave portion, a deed without concealment,
    40] for the son of Calpurn it was a path of grace.
  12. Know ye the Well of Bualc the good,
    his successor throughout the plain,
    from which he drew a draught ....
    a drink for the host, honoured deed.
  13. 45] Know ye the Grave of grim Cellach
    with wailing in unison, filling the breezes:
    by a swift heroic pair he died,
  14. when he was in the north on idle clamour of fools.


  15. Know ye the Grave of the Horse of the king,
    50] Cinaed free from shame of avarice?
    He bore off victory from fleet ones of the bridle
    at the will of the son of noble Irgalach.
  16. The Comb, the Casket of the woman,
    in whatever place each of them is,
    55] it shall abide till the Doom come;
    their beauty shall not grow less and less.
  17. Behold before you–it was the boast of every bard,
    it was the grave of a noble man, fame without decay–
    bear witness, it is the meadow-land of a rough race
    60] the mound of Aed Lurgnech on the hill-slope.
  18. There was caused bloodshed by its chief
    upon the resort of ridges and territories:
    that was a general vengeance of the tribes
    in the place where the great Morrigan was smitten.
  19. 65] Know ye for noted deeds,
    with theme of song truly-bright, with scores of chiefs,
    the plain of bright actions, where shields used to be,
    the Prison of the Grey, where the Grey Steed was?
  20. Know ye by the refuse of heads
    70] the Glen where the sluggish Matha dwelt?
    it was slain after the incursion of lithe hosts:
    much havoc was wrought there.

  21. p.25

  22. Thereafter came (a deed without concealment),
    the kings from a pleasant land towards him,
    75] to view the vast Matha,
    and each planted on him pitilessly his stone.
  23. Buide planted his keen stone
    in the portion which is called Finn's Seat:
    in presence of the hosts of the glens he left
    80] his head on the plain of Muired Mend.
  24. Thereafter came the mighty Ulstermen
    (Conn's proper Share) against him,
    to strive with the might of the sluggish Matha
    so his limbs were broken on Lecc Bend.
  25. 85] A solid barrow was built by them
    for a rampart over the bones of the beast:
    that was the trophy, a fight with lamentation,
    which it possessed with victory and might.
  26. The wall of Oengus the blameless,–
    90] (the name Airther Oenlussa clave to it,–)
    the son of Crundmael on whom fell guilt,
    when he had drunk mead till he was mad.
  27. Royal the contest at the Cast
    of the Mac ind Oc–whence did it arise?
    95] when the eye of mighty Midir was broken:
    is there any of you who can recount it?


Inber n-Ailbine

  1. O men of Muired, bright honour
    among any headstrong company!
    I shall tell you in my warm dwelling
    the cunning story of Ailbine.
  2. 5] There was once a prince far-famed3 who rowed
    north of undivided Ireland:
    he was pilot of every brilliant band in his day,
    Ruad son of valiant Rigdonn.
  3. He fared on a lucky journey, a choice without dispute,
    10] of the morn-slumbering sea early and late;
    to converse with his friend the Norseman,
    a right brave journey it was to Norway.
  4. He came with three boats, splendid and bright,
    it was a vessel ever terrible;
    15] they stopped short, thence came cause of grief
    on the shoulders of the open sea.
  5. They had no power to stir on any side,
    firm was the strong durance:
    into the mighty main without shrinking
    20] went noble Ruad the smiter.

  6. p.29

  7. When he hastened to cut loose the ship in truth
    through the salt depths of the sea's treacherous waters,
    he found, in the secret spot he swam to,4
    nine female forms, fair and firm.
  8. 25] They said to him in pure clear strains
    it was they who had arrested him
  9. ...
    30] ...
    nine women of them, excellent and strong;
    hard it was to approach them.
  10. He slept nine nights with the women
    without gloom, without tearful lament,
    35] under the sea free from waves
    on nine beds of bronze.
  11. Though a woman of them was with child by him,
    he went from them on no unlucky course
    it was a leave misused
    40] on condition that he should come back again.
  12. When she had let him go to his noble comrades,
    he rowed with the companies (?) of his strong host
    he was a good fosterling of a good family
    till he reached Norway of pure valour.

  13. p.31

  14. 45] When they arrived in the east across the sea
    with luck and with high renown,
    they remain seven years seeking fame
    with his friend triumphant.
  15. Thereafter Ruad of the spears went his way
    50] across the waters, the noble youth keen and slender,
    from the east over the strong pure billows of the sea,
    till he reached the level plain of Erin.
  16. False was the lawful prince:
    it was no right judgment nor honourable act,
    55] not to go to the women across the smooth water,
    in the same way as he promised.
  17. When the lordly chieftain touched land southward
    at the plain of Muired of the lowland steads
    with unclouded fame for stern strength,
    60] men heard the martial strain.
  18. That was the song of those tuneful women
    in their pure mellow sweet-sounding speech,
    as they pursued Ruad with the spear point
    over the impetuous clear-streaming tide.
  19. 65] They sailed a boat of flawless metal,
    (it was no ... black hull of mourning)
    nine of them, fierce, radiant, and bright,
    to high Inber Ailbine.

  20. p.33

  21. An evil deed then wrought
    70] a woman of them, with no unconscious burden,
    even the slaying of the son of Ruad strong and good,
    and her very own son.
  22. She made a cast with her son, worse than any crime,
    (it was a stain on his house for him on earth)
    75] she hurled him out in fair combat
    so that he died the death.
  23. Then said that loud-voiced host,
    whom fierce Ruad .... possessed,
    all of them astounded at the open crime
    80] "Dreadful, dreadful was the deed!"
  24. Hence comes (a title free from envy)
    the name (not in deceit however)
    of the river, whose fame we conceal not,
    even as we tell you, O men!
  25. 85] If the name of your plain (pleasant pride!)
    be the title long free from blame of combat,
    it is called from the stout pillar
    Muiredach son of Cormac.
  26. Or if the instructed prefer
    90] to have an eye to glorious deeds of pride,
    they shall call it the blooming land, a good that is not dumb,
    from Moriath wife of Labraid.

  27. p.35

  28. Labraid the Mariner with terrible limbs
    came with a huge mail-clad people,5
    95] ... the bloody plain, a man of war:
    she was his wife, the youthful Moriath.
  29. Moriath, great honour she deserved about the spot
    with the host that cleared her woods:
    when she was attacked, she was no coward,
    100] as is related, O men!



  1. Behold the grave of martial Niall
    over the hill-side keen, ..., strong
    here, by the side of the track of the hosts
    he found a cold couch in the soil.
  2. 5] Niall, son of Eochu, whose is the grave,
    went seven times swiftly across the main;
    he extended the heritage of Conn
    till he was slain above the surf of the Ictian sea.
  3. When the grim folk said from the rampart,
    10] "We desire to look on the king that owns us,"
    uprose thereupon the prince erect,
    the being that was proudest under heaven.
  4. Eochu, that was the name of the man
    of the numerous Leinstermen, a hand of venom;
    15] in the side of Niall, the white-shouldered,
    he lodged his spear, in presence of the hosts.
  5. Though the Leinsterman achieved yonder,
    in concert with the violent grasping Saxons,
    the slaying of the king after his great voyage,
    20] strange the wonder that was wrought there.
  6. Whenas trouble or danger came upon them
    he would be raised aloft (potent the treasure):
    it was a true king's act after doom of death,
    the breaking of seven battles before his face.

  7. p.39

  8. 25] A just word spake Niall,
    when he was slain on the sea by stealth,
    in the spot where Niall's tomb was built,
    that their hostages should be dismissed homeward.
  9. Thereafter they were sent free
    30] over the green stormy sea (wild its warfare)
    hostages of the Saxons (they were a great and comely company)
    hostages of the Franks, hostages of the Romans from the south.
  10. Westward from Tara came
    the warrior band of his warlike powerful retinue:
    35] thence was called, after grief and beating of breasts,
    great Ochan of the following of Niall.
  11. There parted in high Ochan
    one from another the noblest in rank,
    Leinstermen, Munstermen, (he caused them grief)
    40] men of Connaught, men of Ulster, the Fir Lí and Fir Luirg.
  12. A hero united them, who was king;
    not weak was his frame in this world:
    it was a short space from Niall assembly of waves
    till came the blessed Faith of God.
  13. 45] His sons thereafter divided
    the island of Art, who was a wonder of a man,
    it is to them their hostages shall be brought
    so long as clouds shall be round the white sun.

  14. p.41

  15. The two Conalls, Eogan in the north,
    50] Fiachu, Cairpre, Mane the gentle,
    Enna, who was the rallying-point of the host,
    it got Loegaire for king.
  16. The King that brought them under the silence of earth,
    woe to him that worships him not in his lifetime!
    55] he divided the Red Sea in two parts,
    it was through fear of the Lord's folk.
  17. The children of the son of Cairenn, who stride through the battlefield,
    to whom men were obedient altogether,
    against the multitude of young men and horses
    60] none could succour them save the Son of God.
  18. After them came to the East a weapon-loving champion,
    Dathi who was headstrong in his day;
    not weak was his muster at the meeting-place;
    he divided the world in two.
  19. 65] The descendant that is best above the bright-hued soil6
    of all that sprang from Niall (splendid assembly),
    is Colum Cille, who possessed Iona,
    the noblest living man that is in the house of God.



  1. Mide, place of the eager steeds,
    the road whereon Art the Solitary used to be
    the lowland full of the splendour of Lugaid ...
    the level ground of the clan of Conn and Cobthach.
  2. 5] Whence is the name of Meath given to the plain?
    to the heritage of the seed of Conn the Hundred Fighter?
    what pure bold scion (bright the honour),
    what warrior was it whence it got its naming?
  3. Mide it was, the ardent son of Brath
    10] the host-leading son of Deaith;
    for he kindled a mystic fire
    above the race of Nemed, seizer of hostages.
  4. Seven years good ablaze
    was the fire, it was a sure truce:
    15] so that he shed the fierceness of the fire for a time
    over the four quarters of Erin.
  5. So that it is in return for this fire in truth
    (it is not a rash saying, it is not a falsehood)
    that he (Mide and his descendants) has a right by a perpetual bargain
    20] over every chief hearth of Erin.
  6. So the right belongs to the gentle heir
    of the plain of Mide mirthful and bright;
    even a measure of fine meal with a white pig
    for every rooftreee in Erin.

  7. p.45

  8. 25] And they said (no small grief it was),
    the druids of Erin all together,
    "It is an ill smoke was brought to us eastward:
    it has brought an ill mood to our mind."
  9. Then Mide the untiring assembled
    30] the druids of Erin into one house,
    and cut their tongues (a harsh presage)
    out of the heads of the strong and noble druids.
  10. And he buried them under the earth
    of Uisnech in mighty Mide,
    35] and sat him down over their tongues,
    he, the chief seer and his chief shanachie.
  11. Gaine daughter of pure Gumor,
    nurse of mead-loving Mide,
    surpassed all women though she was silent;
    40] she was learned and a seer and a chief druid.
  12. And Gaine said with lamentation,
    before Mide of the great victory,
    "It is over somewhat our house was built,
    and hence shall Uisnech be named."
  13. 45] Uisnech and mighty Mide
    from which Erin of the red weapons is held,
    according as polished learning relates7,
    hence is derived its story.
  14. Guard, O God, Aed ua Carthaig
    50] from hell with all its storms,
    God enjoining his clear protection
    on the mead-loving king of Meath.


Druim nDairbrech

  1. Whence is the hill of Druim Dairbrech named?
    for many a day it increased the household;
    by mine art I see in memory
    a plain populous as the domain of Tara.
  2. 5] Druim Dairbrech, it is a fair fort,
    a sandy rampart by the lank-sided billow;
    the lay of a bard that will be profitable with its goodly share
    I see, from the lovely lofty height.
  3. The smooth-browed hill of the gay banks,
    10] the broad-flanked ridge with sloping sides,
    a spot like Raigne of the lucky bards,
    fiercely assailed rampart of Dairbre Ruddy-face.
  4. Dairbre Ruddy-face, son of Lulach,
    who was sudden as a chain-trap (?) in winter-time,
    15] son of Ligmuine leader of hosts,
    readiest in savage conflict.
  5. The Fidgai, the Fochmaind, and the Gaileoin,
    were not soon tamed, of their free will8;
    the Firbolg, and the multitude of Domnainn,
    20] tame for ever was the violence in their mood of distress.
  6. The tribe of the Crecraige of the raw gold,
    the Gumóir, the Brecraige of bloodless battle,
    the Mendraige of Dairbre generous to song,
    famed for ever was the fierceness of the horrid fight.

  7. p.49

  8. 25] Tuathal of the bloody warriors inflicted9
    on red Dairbre, about the swamp
    headlong defeat across every moorland
    in the battle of Commar, rough beyond other glens.
  9. Dairbre Ruddy-face, on that hill
    30] in evil hour did he separate from his soldiery;
    Tuathal of the martial cheek
    bound him with his iron grip.
  10. Tuathal the Wealthy, the warrior,
    great his rightful fame above princes:
    35] Dairbre of the songs fell
    by his axes–such was the might of the idolator!
  11. This hill of the array of battle
    O swift poets, I declare,
    good in truth is the day I speak of,
    40] for learning whence is named the noble hill.


Lagin I

  • The princes were slain round their king
    (it was an ill deed, it was matter for wrath):
    the Dumb Exile of martial might burnt
    Cobthach Cael, son of Ugaine.
  • 5] Till that crime, Tuaim Tenbath was the name
    of the noble kingly hold, the noted hill,
    till Labraid full of valour sacked it,
    when he made a slaughter of its young men.
  • From the day he was slain (this is sooth)
    10] even Cobthach Cael, with his thirty kings,
    till the birth of the Son of Mary
    is five hundred years ever pure.
  • The beginning of struggle and strife was
    the vengeance of Cobthach on Loegaire:
    15] thereby fell Cobthach of the cairn
    by the grandson of Loegaire fierce and fell.
  • There came on the march to that slaying
    Labraid and thirty hundred of the Dub-Gaill
    in a muster, warlike and staunch,
    20] with their deep-blue lances.
  • From those lances thenceforth
    were the men of Leinster called the Spearmen;
    at the hand of the Dumb Exile, with heavy disaster,
    by these lances Cobthach Cael was slain.
  • 25] This doom shall abide with his family till the Last Day
    that there be war between kindred kings:
    the destruction of Oilill and Loegaire
    at the hand of Cobthach Cael was the first slaying.

  • p.53

    Lagin II

    1. Labraid the Exile, (full his number)
      by whom Cobthach was slain at Dindrig,
      came with a lance-armed host over the sea-water;
      from them Lagin was named.
    2. 5] Tuaim Tenba was the name aforetime
      of the hill where the slaughter was done;
      Dindrig is its name from that time forth,
      since the slaying of the chieftains.
    3. Two and twenty hundreds of the Gall
      came oversea having with them broad lances;
      10] from the lances that were carried there–
      thence the men of Lagin get their name.


    Sliab Bladma

    1. Blod, son of Cu, son of Cass the renowned,
      son of Uachall the many-shaped,
      killed Bregmael the famous smith
      of Cuirche, son of Snithe the swimmer.
    2. 5] Curche Cendmar was a daring king
      over Medraige and over Herot;
      through him Blod, son of Cass Clothmin,
      found never sure protection.
    3. He fared in his ship–clear purpose!–
      10] from the Bottom of pure-cold Galway,
      from Ath Cliath in wide Herot
      to Ath Cliath in Cualu.
    4. Thence he came after many a turn
      to the Point of Nar, son of Edliuc,
      15] and possessed, as his special portion,
      the mountain whose name derives from Blod.
    5. A valiant man who used to wage battle died
      at Sliab Bladma–vast renown!
      even Blad, son of Bregon, with troops of warriors,
      20] died of disease in the monster-haunted Sliab Blod.
    6. Or, it is from the son of Bregon the wrathful
      that it is named Sliab Bladma, with onsets of women;
      their increase is not far from the cattle
      was the mountain where it happened through strong Blad.

    7. p.57

    8. 25] Or the monsters of the sea that was not calm,
      beasts–ruisenda was their name–
      came throughout the land of the tribes,
      so that from them is named Sliab Bled.
    9. Blod, son of Cu, son of Cass Clothmin,
      30] slew the herd of Bregmael Ban,
      the smith of Curche, son of Snithe;
      he settled at Ross Tire Nair.


    Fid nGabli

    1. Dear to me is bright Gabul
      who set moving the bright-stemmed wood,
      not for the sake of a reward that should decay,
      he prayed that from him it should be named.
    2. 5] Ainge gathered a bright faggot
      against dripping unless it was ebb-tide:
      every kind of tree without exception is to be sought
      in the soft fresh-leaved faggot.
    3. A tub was made for his daughter
      10] above the breast-work of the high river mouth;
      it would not leak unless the tide were full:
      she loved (?) the lot of virginity.
    4. He it was who stole it (burden of a tale)
      even Gaible the pale, son of Ethedeon;
      15] he cast it without payment for labour
      from the cold Pass of the Thicket.
    5. It found rest in the confines of Fland;
      he claims of right his copse and his own wood,
      the man who thieved and stole in the east;
      20] to women he was at all times dear.


    Mag Life

    1. Life the bright (fame in plenty!),
      daughter of Cannan of the hundred coracles,
      got as reward for her labour a title of pious observance
      even the name of the plain; it is a mighty boon.
    2. 5] A choice, pleasant boon gave
      the spencer of friendly Conaire
      to the daughter of Cannan,–of the hundred hides,
      Deltbanna of the gleaming teeth.
    3. Child-birth was the death of eager Life
      10] at Port Agmar in Aran;
      thereby the son of Drucht got his death,
      from his great grief for heroic Life.



    1. The Barrow, enduring its silence,
      that flows through the folk of old Ailbe;
      a labour it is to learn the cause whence is called
      Barrow, flower of all famous names.
    2. 5] No motion in it made
      the ashes of Mechi the strongly smitten:
      the stream made sodden and silent past recovery10
      the fell filth of the old serpent.
    3. Three turns the serpent made;
      10] it sought out the soldier to consume him;
      it would have wasted by its nature all the kine
      of the indolent hosts of ancient Erin.
    4. Therefore Diancecht slew it:
      there was rude reason for clean destroying it,
      15] for preventing it for ever from wasting
      above every resort, from consuming utterly.
    5. Known to me is its grave where he cast it,
      a tomb without walls or roof-tree;
      its evil ashes,–no ornament to the region
      20] found silent burial in noble Barrow.


    Moin Gai Glais

    1. Culdub, son of Dian, at Samain tide,
      went afar, the famous fighter,
      to demand duel man to man
      with joyous generous Fidrad.
    2. 5] Thereby fell Fidrad
      by encounter with doughty foes:
      the death of keen Fidrad in his fury, came
      by the hand of the red-knived son of Dian.
    3. Gai Glas, grandson of Lug of the graves,
      10] was a mass, a bulwark against enmity:
      he bore a riveted spear against shields,
      which Aith, the noble smith, forged.
    4. 'Tis he was champion of generous Fiachu,
      the grandson of Lug Liamna, bold and keen:
      15] he was the warrior who prayed to go without hire;
      by his hand fell Culdub.



    1. Broccaid the powerful with winning of hostages,
      of the bright and famous race of the Galian,
      he had a son, Faifne the poet;
      the record of his final madness is no falsehood.
    2. 5] It was she was the mother of the comely son,–
      even Libir quick and eager of mood:
      their daughter was the swift lady of the hosts
      Aige, the noble and skilful.
    3. Exceeding fair were the four, curled and gentle;
      10] they were a noble kin, of virtuous behaviour,
      the father and the lovely mother,
      the daughter and the brother soft and fair.
    4. The evil spirits made an onset
      (it was no feeble deed of wanton folly):–
      15] they changed into the form of a wild doe
      the noble Aige of the love-spots.
    5. She traversed Erin from shore to shore
      fleeing before all the fierce and fiery packs;
      so that she coursed round Banba, land of judges,
      20] bravely, four fair times.
    6. Her doings and her valiance had an end,
      here came to pass her final dissolution;
      they tore her in pieces in their wickedness,
      did the warriors of Meilge of Imlech.

    7. p.69

    8. 25] Hence is the name of chill Aige
      given to the river of the many-coloured plain
      since she was tortured without secrecy
      and flung upon the flowing water.
    9. That ancient stream is deathless till Doomsday,
      30] which pours across Life in furious wise:
      (if you will heed, not wrongly noised abroad (?))–
      Aige is its name for all time.
    10. Westward came rushing,
      the swift druid, the skilled poet,
      35] to blemish the famous king of Berre,
      Meilge, son of kindly Cobthach.
    11. He denounced rightfully upon the king
      reproach and shame together,
      and disgrace an unremitting harrying ...
      40] in revenge for his sweet sister.
    12. The keen poet fell
      by the harsh and horrid cause;
      he was betrayed for ever ...
      for blemishing the king of high Tara.
    13. 45] He was chastised, he was maimed,
      he was parted from his misery;
      in Faffand of the wrathful warriors
      he met the pursuit of swift spoilers.

    14. p.71

    15. There he begged a boon
      50] at the place where the soldier cut him down (?)
      that his name should serve–O deed of woe!–
      to designate the ancient hill for ever.
    16. Known to me with laughter (?) in sooth
      is the death of Libir and Broccaid;
      55] not obscure is the cause whence is named
      the rath where Broccaid was buried.


    Almu I

    1. Almu of the Leinstermen, a fort of the Fians,
      an abode that Find the truly noble used to frequent:
      hither came by chance one of no common line,
      the woman from whom Almu is so called.
    2. 5] Almu is the name of the man who got the place
      in the time of Nemed of mighty renown;
      he died there on the green hill
      of a sudden sickness in a moment.
    3. Almu, beautiful was the woman!
      10] the wife of Nuadu Mor, son of Achi;
      she entreated–just was the award–
      that her name should be on the entire hill.
    4. Nuadu the druid was a fierce man;
      by him was built a fort strong and high:
      15] by him alum was rubbed on the rock
      over the whole fort, after it was marked out.
    5. All white is the fort (bitter strife),
      as if it had received the lime of all Erin,
      from the alum he put on his house,
      20] thence is Almu so named.
    6. Tadc, son of Nuadu, who strengthens valour,
      the druid of Cathair Mor great in fame,
      to him his father left
      Almu with her noble possessions.
    7. 25] Tadc the strong had a lovely daughter
      whose name was Murni Fair-neck;
      the woman was demanded by Cumall;
      Tadc the white-sided refused her.

    8. p.75

    9. Cumall carried her off by force
      30] the daughter of Tadc, though it was an ugly deed;
      for a year, without right and without victory,
      did Cumall the warrior possess Murni.
    10. Tadc wept gustily
      before Cond the brave of the hundred fights:
      35] he taunted him–enormous the evil!–
      he reviled him,–great was the hurt!
    11. Sentence is given by Cond the brave
      against Cumall that he should leave Banba;
      so they fought the battle of Cnucha there,
      40] and Cumall fell before Cond.
    12. Nine hours before the battle was fought
      was begotten the Man of Luck;
      on the daughter of Tadc the white-sided
      Find the true warrior was begotten.
    13. 45] Murni came after the slaying of her husband,
      and fared to Almu the all-white;
      plaintive, sorrowful she was,
      it was not fitting for the high-born lady.
    14. Lovely and gracious was the princess,
      50] and she was great with child;
      Tadc threatened (great the deed!)
      to kill and make an end of her.
    15. Said Cond of the white palm:
      "I hold it better she should bear a son;
      55] the same mother, with her substance,
      had Cumall and my father."
    16. Vehemently is she rejected by Tadc,
      (to Murni it was cause of tears)
      yet he did not dare to do what he spoke of–
      60] to destroy them or slay them suddenly.

    17. p.77

    18. She came to fair Temair of Fail,
      Murni Fair-Neck ...-Skin;
      she asked the blameless Cond
      of her destiny and her disposal.
    19. 65] "Go thou," said Cond, "thou has my leave
      to Fiacail Fí, son of Conchend:
      the own-sister of Cumall dwells with him
      Bodmall ..."
    20. She went to Temair Margi,
      70] did Murni White-neck the high-born;
      Conla, servant of Cond the blameless
      ... to dispose of her.
    21. Joyful to see her was the pleasant youth
      Fiacail Fí, son of Conchend;
      75] joyful was Bodmall, right heartily,
      joyful was the whole company.
    22. Thereafter was born Find the honoured,
      king of the Fians, high his spirit!
      ... nine years precisely
      80] was he the royal champion of Erin.
    23. Find demanded from Tadc of the towers,
      a price for killing Cumall Mor,
      battle without respite, without delay,
      or to get a duel with him man to man.
    24. 85] Tadc, since he could not face battle
      against the true-born prince,
      abandoned to him (it was enough for him)
      all Almu as it stood.


    Almu II

    1. Almu, she was fair to foot11,
      the daughter of Beccan the bright-robed,
      the wife of Iuchna of the tresses, with a hundred head of cattle,
      from whom Almu sought to be named.
    2. 5] Many were its excellences, many its troops,
      many its hosts, many its ancient hostels,
      its fame was known in melody,
      whence it is called mighty Almu.
    3. When there mustered in their meeting-place
      10] the Fianna of Cumall's son, frank of face,
      thou wast a seat of men fierce with the spear,
      thou wast a high rock, O Almu!
    4. When Clann Bresail of the ceaseless strife
      came to her splendid feast,
      15] with desire of good cheer, across the stream of Segais,
      noble Almu was aliment for them.



    1. Alend, meeting place for our youths,
      rath of Art with his royal roads:
      the chariot pole of victory was he on its plain
      till Fal, son of Fidga, found it:
    2. 5] The grave where Conchend planted his roofpole,
      the son of Fergna, a hero of fair fame,
      field-captain of Lugaid, hewer of targes;
      the seat that was Setna Long-staff's:
    3. The stead where dwelt stern Messdelmond,
      10] by him was reared its lofty wall;
      from its springs a draught was drained
      by Mess Scegra the Scot of Leinster:
    4. The lawn of Ruamand, where the spear-point grew red,
      with the sties of the honourable prince;
      15] a lovely land, a perfect citadel,
      the soller where dwelt Andrithir:
    5. The demesne of Fergus Fairge
      a proud and eminent heritage:
      the portion of nimble Find mac Rosa
      20] the royal keep of Bressal Bregaman:
    6. Luchdond, who scarred cheeks–alas!,
      from Gabran even unto Ath Cliath!
      in Fal Segi would he swim the water,
      dire were his deeds around Alend:

    7. p.83

    8. 25] A furious (?) bear, a flame of valour,12
      a resting-place giving vigour to heroes
      in the time of Nia Corb (brave chief!)
      thou wast a home of the wise, O Alend!
    9. The chariot of Cathair, coffer of treasures;
      30] valiantly did he encompass the leaders of herds;
      burden of all discourse (clear fact!)
      is the high king of Emain and Alend.
    10. The chess-board of Fiachu, victorious king,
      fiery dragon (stout his body!);
      35] he drove red spear-points through kings,
      he chained the battalions of Aled.
    11. The hill of Bressal Beolach the valorous,
      to him belonged Tuaim Tenbath Temair,
      upon spruce steeds the famous king
      40] brandished the weapons of Alend.
    12. A lordly river visits it,
      the Segais which flows from Sid Nechtain,
      and Life, swiftest his waters:
      they beat upon the bare plain of Alend.
    13. 45] Three mighty men made essays of trenchings,
      Burech, Fiach, and Aururas:
      it is they who without flagging (clear fact!)
      dug the rampart of Alend.

    14. p.85

    15. Buirech cast from him straightway
      50] across the rampart (no weakling he!)–
      a stone he cast from his spear-arm;
      and that is the ail in Alend.
    16. Here dwelt the wife of the strong-limbed,
      heroic daughter of Lugaid;
      55] the clan was not disgraced by her repute;13
      from her came the royal name of Alend.