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Farewell East-to Alba from me,
He sent her a sportive doe, t
Having heard this news
boat on the waves
his word of truth,
* I have put Uirneac in the genitive case, according to rule 10, page 79.
+ eilit baoc, does not mean a hind from the hill. Baoc signifies soft, effeminate, or any thing easily frightened : hence used for timorous
1 Už seems to be the proper word instead of eaö: they are pronounced alike ; however, it is the safest way to observe the strict orthography of words. Re a cois, merely means beside it; as le coir na fairge, by the sea-side.
Alas! did she hear this night
The day seems long without the children of Usna,
Three attachments to the daughters of Britain,
* Other editions of this beautiful poem have re n-oiltaig deóraide, that is, the entertainers of strangers or sojourners, or by whom strangers were entertained; but the above is preferable.
+ This line is not easily understood, nor translated—for rig milióe means a warlike king-and being in the singular, can be applied only to one, but the relative pronoun compounded with do, and the following words include the sons of Usna; so that rig milióe cannot be the proper reading, and on the authority of an other edition, I have adopted mic rig as the proper
reading, and the easiest to be understood.
It is difficult to find words exactly corresponding to buan 4 o-treire, for buan signifies everliving, everlasting, unceasing, and treire signifies victory, conquest, &c.,
Their eyebrows were dark brown,
* This verse and the one following, is not found in some editions; and would appear ridiculous if translated literally. • Fuineoga,' I have translated eyelashes, though literally it means a window. The two verses, as far as I can judge of them, seem to be an addition of unmeaning, versification.
+ This line and the next, are incapable of translation in the way they are, for to translate them would be, “High king of Ulster, I forsook in elopement thy love Næsa ; from which it would appear, that addressing the King of Ulster, she told him that she forsook the love of Næsa, which would be contrary to the poem altogether : and as the language of this poem has evidently been changed from what it once was, this word should not have been excepted from the fate of the rest, elo is certainly the ancient orthography, but does not agree with the modern rule--caol le caol agus leatan le leatan, and as the other words have been pruned and adapted to this rule, why not this also ? ealoo is the modern method of writing this word, as is evident from the following line of the beautiful translation of Moore's melodies, by Dr. M'Hale,
ealocad le mo cuilfion 'r ni aireóčajo me an hon,
Cho geur leis an namaid ta var n-dibirt as djon. Here ealocad, the first person future, means, I will elope, or escape—or rather, I will ny in elopement; but the meaning of this line will soon appear, by adopting a manuscript reading, as, and rió Ulao mo čeadfear, do treigear é 4 grao Naoire, the translation of which is as above.
After thee I will not long survive,
Man! who diggest their grave,
Their three hounds and three hawks
The three collars of their three hounds
I never before was alone
My sight has departed from me
Besides the abbreviations exhibited in page 3, many contractions are used in the Irish manuscripts.
Various tables of them have been compiled, and attempts made to reduce them to general principles; but in a business so very arbitrary and fanciful as that of abbreviating, it may be readily conceived that no systematic arrangement, however ingenious, can be completely satisfactory.
The following tables, originally published by the learned General Vallancey, contain by far the best and most useful list of contractions that has yet appeared.
It is necessary to observe, however, that certain contractions, made according to general rules, have not been inserted in the tables, viz :
When a vowel is placed over a consonant, it carries the force of r, and its own power, either before or after the r; as,
When the small s is set over a consonant, it has the force of ear; if ş be doubled, the r must be doubled also ; as,
At the end of the table are inserted various characters, termed ceañ fa eite, the head of the ridge, or, cor fa ċarán, the l'eaper's path. The use of these is as follows:-When a sentence ends in or near the middle of one line, the next sentence begins