Na Píobairí Uilleann wrote:
> This speculation about the origin of Port na bPucai is probably a waste
> of time.
> (c) it is not attested before O Riada's time,
Are you sure? Quoting from the liner notes in Beauty an Oileain:
"Although The Tune of the Fairies is frequently played to-day, it would
appear that in 1930 the tune was little known, if at all, except on the
Great Blasket. A visiting Jesuit Priest, Fr Sean de hIde, had heard
about The Tune of the Fairies and although he enquired of several people
if they had the tune, he had difficulty in obtaining it. Finally, he
got it from Peig Ni Chathain a young girl on the island."
So, it appears to date back to 1930, and initimates that it existed
prior to that time.
And yes, i too would discount all the whale sound rationalizations.