> One could make some sort of a case for it meaning "Stream of Ireland"
> given that the underlying mythic imagery concerns the Well of Segais,
> whose waters are suffused with imbas, the great knowledge that flows
> out via the River Boyne into Ireland . Very unlikely too, but it might
> be worth mentioning also that the Stone of Fál on the Hill of Tara
> lies not too far from two ancient wells whose names remind us of
> Boann: the Well of the White Cow and the Well of the Calf , both of
> whose waters flow out to join other rivers that in turn flow into the
> River Boyne.
What you suggest is a very elaborate type of metaphor and kenning:
stream of Fál = stream of Inis Fáil = stream of Ireland = Boyne =
metaphorical for Segais = metaphorical for knowledge = stream of
Dennis quoted a short piece from PL Henry about kennings in an
earlier mail (http://listserv.heanet.ie/cgi-bin/wa?A2=ind0006&L=old-
irish-l&P=R1008). Would the absence of a word for kenning in Irish
point to the fact that this feature didn't exist as such (apart from
chance examples) in Irish. And could we use a possible example of a
kenning as an argument for vikingish influence?