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

poem/story 104


¶1] Athais Mide, whence the name? Not hard to say. A great famine came on all Erin, so that all on whom it fell made themselves strong cellars to save and hoard their victuals. The king of Meath had a strong house built at Tulach in Chomluind. A certain fellow came and broke through the wall of the house and pushed his hand through the breach, seeking food. Those who were in the house espied it, and his hand was cut off inside the wall. He pushed his sound hand also through the same breach. Those within seized it, and they came upon him, and he was caught. ‘Why’, said they, ‘did you put your hand in after your other hand, to have it cut off?’ ‘I felt such hunger’, said he, ‘and such craving for food, that I did not mind if all my limbs were cut off one after another, if only I could get food.’ ‘'Tis a sore disgrace to the men of Erin, what you say’, said they all. ‘Therefore also shall Athais (disgrace) be the name of the hill where this happened, for ever’, quoth the druid. So hence the name has cleaved to the hill from that day, namely, Athais Mide.

¶2] I am Maurice O'Clery, and I am weary this day.