Imatges de pÓgina


The following literal translation of the poem, which is printed at the conclusion of Neilson's Grammar, with the critical notes, was supplied by a young friend, who has devoted himself with much praiseworthy ardour to the study of our national literature. The Editor, in professing to give the public a reprint of Dr. Neilson's work, did not feel himself authorized to make any alteration in it, but the following translation is absolutely necessary to enable the student to understand the original poem :

Dear to me that Eastern land, *
Alba, with its wonders,
From which I never would depart,
Had I not come with Næsa.

Dear is Dunfay and Dunfin,
And dear is the Dun above them ;
Dear is Innis Drayon too,
And dear is Dunsuibhne.

Oh, Cullcuan !-oh Cullcuan !
Where Aindle and Ardan would resort, t
Too short there was my stay,
And that of Næsa, in the west of Alba.

* The article is here substituted in place of the possessive pronoun; for if the pronoun be used, the leading letter of tir should be eclipsed according to rule the 4th, page 88, and will mean our country or land.

+ This line is evidently a corruption; for, as it stands at present, it is almost unintelligible. According to the edition of the Gaelic Society, in 1808, it is "gur ctigeno Adle, monuar, ( Whither, alas! Aindle would resort.”

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Vale of Laith! oh, vale of Laith!
There beneath soft coverlets I slept ;*
Fish, venison, and prime of badeer (atelieute eeting
Was my repast in the vale of Laith. For a loveliek
Vale of Massan ! oh, vale of Massan!

Fawwal .

plureus High its hart's tongue, fair its paths,
When tue In it we enjoy'd a rocking sleep,
Gregmul Over the grassy harbour of Massan.
Ayd A ChecimVale of Eithe! oh, vale of Eithe!

There was my first dwelling rais'd ;
Beauteous its woods, upon rising, .
Resort of the sun is the vale of Eithe.
Oh! vale of Archan ! oh! vale of Archan!
It was the straight valley of smooth ridge-(usustusel,
A man of his age was not more sprightly
Than my Naesa, in the valley of Archan.

See Page 10
Oh! vale of Daruadh! vale of Daruadh !
My love to each man to whom it is hereditary;
Sweet is the Cuckoo's note on each bending bough,
On the summit o'er the vale of Daruadh.
Dear is Drayno, and its resounding shore-
Dear its waters flowing o'er pure sand;
Never would I have departed from thence
Had I not come with him I loved.

* Translate soft coverlets instead of shady thickets, which wan ders a little too far from the text.

+ This is here translated, “Fair its paths," which seems to agree better with her description of the vale of Massan than geal 4-gasain, meaning “white its little stalks."

This is a beautiful simile, when understood, which is very difficult from the way it is written in Irish, for the literal meaning, according to the text, would be ridiculous; but if buaile, which signifies a resort, or any place of shelter, be substituted in place of bualad, the present participle of the verb buail, to strike, the meaning will be easily understood, and elegant; Deardra

compares the Vale of Eithe to a buaile, where the sun loved to linger from its rising till it set: This word, buaile, is used at present, for the place where cattle are driven for sheltoi and change of pasture.

Farewell East-to Alba from me,
Delightful is the sight of her bays, and valleys green-
Watching the Sons of Usna at the chase,
Delightful it was to sit on the prospect of her cliffs.
The nobles of Alba met at the banquet,
And the sons of Usna, deserving of respect,*
To the daughter of the Earl of Duntreol,
Næsa gave a secret kiss.

He sent her a sportive doet
A hind of the forest, and a fawn with it, I
He went to her on a visit
Returning from the host of Inbherness.

Having heard this news
My head was filled with jealousy,
I go in my

boat on the waves
Regardless whether I live or die.
But they followed me swimming,
Both Aindle and Ardan, who ne'er used deceit;
I return with them home-
Two, who would face a hundred in fight.
Næsa gave his word of truth,
And swore thrice in presence of his arms
That on me he would never inflict grief
Till he went to the host of the dead.
The lady of Duntreon likewise gave
Her solemn word and rash vow,
Till death should separate them,
She never would go with man.

* I have put Uirneac in the genitive case, according to rule 10, page 79.

+ Cilio baot, does not mean a hind from the hill. B4oc signifies soft, effeminate, or any thing easily frightened: hence used for timorous

* Už seems to be the proper word instead of ead: they are pronounced alike; however, it is the safest way to observe the strict orthography of words. Re 4 coir, merely means beside it;

as le coir na fairge, by the sea-side. Iturik ikus u Jurjetetud

the passage u planie flatteu a iti umytle cinco.

Peautifulcuit noudd, wheatrising
Hue dutiget allo upou ale Cicho!

or strikes frunt

Alas! did she hear this night
Næsa to have gone to his grave beneath the clay,
She would weep with sorrow wild,
And I too would weep sevenfold with her.

The day seems long without the children of Usna,
For it was not tiresome to be in their company,
Sons of the king, cause of these my flowing tears, *
Three lions of the hill of Umha.

Three attachments to the daughters of Britain,
Three hawks of the hill of Guilinn,
Sons of a king to whom valour made obeisance, +
And to whom heroes yielded homage.
Three warriors not liberal of homage,
Your fall is the cause of woe-
Three sons of the daughter of Chathfa,
Three supporters of the wars of Culna:
Three who were reared at Aoifi,
To whom the territories around paid tribute,
Three pillars of the headlong bursting battle
Were the three youths of Sgatha,
Three fosterlings that were at Uatha,
Three warriors lasting in strength,
Three renowned sons of Usna,

Tis mournful to be in want of you, 1 * Other editions of this beautiful poem have re n-oiltaig deórajve, 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 nig 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-oreire, for buan signifies everliving, everlasting, unceasing, and creire signifies victory, conquest, &c.

Their eyebrows were dark brown,*
Their eyelashes bright and light,
Their eyes sparkling and Aaming,
Their cheeks as the flame of embers, (wood.)
Their legs as the down of swans,
Their knees nimble and fair,
Soft and delicate their hands,
And their arms fair and manly.
The high king of Ulster, my first bethrothed,+
I forsook him for love to Næsa
Short will be my life after them;
I will sing their funeral dirge.
That I would live after Næsa
Let no one on earth imagine,
Nor after Aindle and Ardan,
Life to me would not be dear.


* 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 agur leatan le leatan, and as the other words have been pruned and adapted to this rule, why not this also ? Caloo is the modern method of writing this word, as is evident from the following line of the beautifu ranslation of Moore's melodies, by Dr. M‘Hale,

Calocad le mo cuilcioñi 'r ni aireóćajó me an ron,

Cho geur leis an namaid ta var n-oibiro ar djon. Here ealóiad, the first person future, means, I will elope, or escape-or rather, I will Ay in elopement; but the meaning of this line will soon appear, by adopting a manuscript reading, as, ard rió Ulad mo čeadfear, do treigear é 4 grao Waoire, the translation of which is as above.

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