Corpus of Electronic Texts Edition
The Metrical Dindshenchas (Author: [unknown])
- In commemorating the homes of Tuag I take cognisance of a high place, a goal free from carnage, enduring Benn Bóguine.
- The cause for which it got this name for all time I will declare in my long lay'tis no hard task, for well I remember it.
- Hither came, once on a time, as it were any foreign
straying from a woman, a beast of price, one of her cows, across the Bann.
- Flidais was the woman's name, daughter of Garb son of Gréssach, that well-attended generous woman, wife of Ailell the Bearded.
- That cow dropped two calves by reason of her haste (a sore business, and a strange one), a cow and a bull, in that travel.
- Then for a certain season they multiplied by their
: throughout every slope that would support them they brought fullness and increase.
- Before them went a brindled bull, forward to face danger for their sake against herds, against wolf-packs, against tame beasts.
- No milk-maid milked them, no savage assailed them; though hosts came to hunt them, they quelled not nor quenched them.
- When the bull from that ancient hill belled forth his bellow there was no cow in that land but would wend to that herd.
- Thereof did die the best of Banba's kine, by hearing, not seeing him: there was no saving of their increase.
- There was a woman of that country, wandering from home to home, Echtgal, Uathach's daughter, Mac Baisgil's portly dame.
- A nursling then she had who did her pleasure without shame, the son of doughty Niall, 'tis said, Fiach of the bag-pipe and harp.
- He set a steer before her by his cheating charms: Erc was her name for times to come, seven blessings dropped from her.
- This cow fell in heat at the voice of the mighty bull, and she left disconsolate Fiachra son of Niall.
- Said his fosterer to him in wrath and in rage: O Fiachra of the many arts, bestir thyself to the encounter!
- Hie thee at headlong speed! search Erin with her fords, till the cow return to her stall, busy thyself with my wonted arts.
- Thereupon he went his way, Fiachra, tried in bloodshed: from tribe to tribe he passed to the hill of tawny kine.
- There was nothing hidden from his eye, gazing from the spacious knoll, of fairy-folk or fetches, of herds, or goblins.
- When he reached this height, the peerless champion from afar, in his valorous career, he was untiring in slaughter.
- The fierce captain smote throngs of the chiefest herds; he slew them over every plough-land; stout was his sword.
- From the great cattle-killing that he wrought in that hour, from that bloodless butchery, is named Bend Boguine, from that herd.
- Fiachu, he of the feastings and of banquets among princes, harried them, invisible: here is the hill where they lie.