Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Metrical Dindshenchas (Author: [unknown])

poem/story 7


  1. Here used to stand a lofty idol, that saw many a fight, whose name was the Cromm Cruaich; it caused every tribe to live without peace.
  2. Alas for its secret power! the valiant Gaedil used to worship it: not without tribute did they ask of it to satisfy them with their share in the hard world.
  3. He was their god, the wizened Cromm, hidden by many mists: as for the folk that believed in him, the eternal Kingdom beyond every haven shall not be theirs.
  4. For him ingloriously they slew their hapless firstborn with much wailing and peril, to pour their blood round Cromm Cruaich.

  5. p.21

  6. Milk and corn they asked of him speedily in return for a third part of all their progeny: great was the horror and outcry about him.
  7. To him the bright Gaedil did obeisance: from his worship—many the crimes—the plain bears the name Mag Slecht.
  8. Thither came Tigernmas, prince of distant Tara, one Samain eve, with all his host: the deed was a source of sorrow to them.
  9. They stirred evil, they beat palms, they bruised bodies, wailing to the demon who held them thralls, they shed showers of tears, weeping prostrate.
  10. Dead the men, void of sound strength the hosts of Banba, with land-wasting Tigernmas in the north, through the worship of Cromm Cruaich—hard their hap!
  11. For well I know, save a fourth part of the eager Gaedil, not a man—lasting the snare—escaped alive, without death on his lips.
  12. Round Cromm Cruaich there the hosts did obeisance: though it brought them under mortal shame, the name cleaves to the mighty plain.

  13. p.23

  14. Ranged in ranks stood idols of stone four times three; to beguile the hosts grievously the figure of the Cromm was formed of gold.
  15. Since the kingship of Heremon, bounteous chief, worship was paid to stones till the coming of noble Patrick of Ard Macha.
  16. He plied upon the Cromm a sledge, from top to toe; with no paltry prowess he ousted the strengthless goblin that stood here.