Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Metrical Dindshenchas (Author: [unknown])
Carn Hui Neit
- The grave of Bress, gifted with excellences,
master of love-spells,
the son of comely Elatha,
the brave ancestor of our gathering,
- 5] The brave son of Neit, son of Indui,
who was son of Allda, splendid in bounty,
son of Tat, son of Taburn, high in courage,
high in fame,
- Son of Enda, son of Baa,
10] who went rowing on his voyages,
son of Ibad the comely,
who was the noble son of Bethach,
- Son of Iarbonel the seer,
with strife of dreadful lance.
15] son of Nemed, armed with weapons,
who came in swift ships.
- This was their alliance
it was no counsel of weariness
between the Tuatha De for certain
20] and the powerful Cland Nemid.
- Bress, a kindly friend was he,
noble he was and fortunate,
ornament of the host, with visage never woeful,
of the Tuath De he was the flower.
- 25] The drink of a hundred for each roof-tree
was brought to the chieftain without fail,
of the milk of dun-hued kine:
he suffered from that fare.
- In the reign of Nechtan bass-chain,
30] of dear fame, of enduring purpose,
at the cost of the King of the two Munsters,
occurred the cause of the enduring name.
- The kine of every townland in Munster
lasting harm! by Nechtan's orders
35] were singed, over ferns,
till they were black of hue.
- A mess of ashes was smeared
by the noted men of cunning
on the kine famed for fatness
- They fashioned stout kine of wood
that whole host noble and slender:
Lug, who was dutiful on all occasions,
chose them and brought them together.
- 45] Pails in their forks were set
with cheerful nimbleness;
red stuff, with no bright shining fatness,
that is the milk that filled them.
- Three hundred, that was their number
50] on the road to that gathering:
at this contest, through his cheating illusion,
there was not a cow of these kine alive.
- Bress, hot of valour, came
to the middle of the field to judge them:
55] thereby, without prosperous issue,
he perished and died.
- From the drove were measured
three hundred measures, bitter-harsh,
for the spear-attended king to drink:
60] it was a preparation of ill-presage.
- Bress had a vow not to refuse
any feat that was offered him:
he drank it off without flinching:
I know not what it brings.
- 65] At the Carn of radiant Ua Neit
it killed the stern scion,
when he had drunk without dread
a draught of the dark ruddy liquor.
- By reason of this unfair demand, without due observance
70] since the failure of his vow,
without rightful and seemly honour
the grave of Bress covers him.