Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Metrical Dindshenchas (Author: [unknown])
- Here settled, as we believe,
after coming to a goal eagerly sought,
the daughter of Eochaid Airem
and of Etain the noble.
- 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.
- 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.
- In spite of Eochaid Airem
Midir bore off the festive Etain
15] from Fremand, though bright of brow;
so she left mournful Banba.
- 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."
- By the side of Eochaid Airem
came the hosts of noble Erin
from Fremand, though bright of brow,
to sack bright Bri Leith.
- 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.
- After the sack of the fairy fort
30] there came fifty hardy men,
(shapely was that tribe)
to talk with the lance-bearing kings.
- 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!
- From them he chose out
his own right pure daughter;
false was the declaration Midir made
40] that this was the bargain agreed upon.
- 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.
- 45] When Eochaid went again
to sack bright Bri Leith,
he bore off his wife, having reunited with her,
from Midirglorious feat!
- 'Twas then he demanded
50] his honourfine from Midir
did Eochaid the upright, the fair and strong
and obtained it after award by law.
- This is the fourfold demand
that Eochaid Airem made,
55] with many a distinguished company,
with tale of shields and swords:
- 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.
- "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."
- 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.
- 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.
- Then was the Rath bestowed
by Eochaida word without delusion
75] with everything she demanded
with plenty of treasures therein.
- Midir after the expiry of truce
came about the bold award
to Eochaid once more,
80] about the same just business.
- Midir prayed the noble prince
for the strong keep where was begotten1
Sigmall, his daughter's son,
who dwells in noble Sid Nenta.
- 85] Ogniad was his mother's name;
she was daughter to Midir;
not evil was her disposition
though she knew not rule nor law.
- 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.
- 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.