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

poem 76

Ard na Riag

  1. Ard na Riag — declare to us its origin
    if you can gauge it aright!
    how came it to be so christened to after-times?
    how came this name upon the tongues of men?
  2. 5] Tell us a while of the gibbets
    whence comes the name perpetually:
    its fruit is no beauty without increase,
    since its produce began to multiply.
  3. From four gibbets is it called
    10] by this name, when it comes to mind;
    reprobates fierce as bears were they,
    the four foster-brothers of Cellach.
  4. Cellach son of Eogan of Eig,
    his henchmen were they,
    15] a kindred that deserved not to be fettered,
    virtuous foster-brothers all four.
  5. Their names were Maelcroin, Maelsenaid
    and Maeldalua, lover of ale,
    and Maelteoraid of the throng:
    20] a chieftain who gave crooked guidance to our noble clan.
  6. Guaire corrupted the band of warriors —
    it was not hard — by his constant urging:
    he gave them all they asked to murder Cellach;
    this was the condition of the beheading.
  7. 25] For the slaying of Cellach
    by the wicked deed of his own people,
    for the sake of a bribe that profited not,
    Guaire was deprived of lasting profit.

  8. p.417

  9. Cuchoingelt put fetters
    30] on the base wicked hand:
    he succeeded in carrying them off captive:
    there was no ban upon his seizing them.
  10. He brought the heathens to Port Rig
    to gibbet and to torture them:
    35] there they were hung all four:
    a muddy death for them was a fair requital.
  11. From that time forth Ard na Riag
    is the name in vogue among the Gaels:
    it is the wont of every bard to visit
    40] their graves, their lofty abodes.

  12. p.419