>From: dooley6x <[log in to unmask]>
>The story is full of magical elements, and the first section tells the
>story of a rather ridiculus dispute between a poet and St. Manchín.
I think you are on to something, Charles....
>As an example, lines 44-52 set up the main story by telling of a plot by
>Fergal mac Moíle Dúin to destroy Cathal Mac Fhinguine, king of
> ro gairmed scolaige i n-a dochumm, & do-ruachell lógu
> móra don scolaigi ar thuathi do chur isna h-il-blassaib út
> do admilled Chathail meic Fhinguine. Ocus ro lá in
> scolaigi tuathi & gentlecht isna h-il-blassaib-sin, & ro
> tidnacit chuca ina h-il-blassa, & cartaid timthirid dia
> tidnocul do Chathal. Ocus ro gáidetar for nach ochta
> coitchend, .i. grian & ésca, drúcht & muir, nem & talam, lá
> & adaig,
I'm assuming that you're translating ochta coitchend as "eight universal
things"? In other places, some of these are what make up the 8-part Adam,
while in Gaelic stuff (both Irish and Scots) they're often called the
du/ile, although the exact make-up of the 8 here is unusual. But the du/ile
are often the sureties of oaths, not just curses, and they're summoned for
protection, not just destruction--although if you use them as sureties and
violate your oath, they may turn on you as Dennis and I were discussing on
Celtic_Well. I had found this in AFM:
After Laeghaire, the son of Niall of the Nine Hostages, had been thirty
years in the sovereignty of Ireland, he died by the side of Caissi, between
Eire and Alba, i.e. two hills which are in Ui Faelain; and it was the Sun
and the Wind that killed him, because he had violated them. Concerning which
the poet said:
1. Laeghaire, son of Niall, died
On the side of Caissi, green its land;
The elements of God, whose guarantee he had violated,
Inflicted the doom of death upon the king.
Iar m-beith deich m-bliadhna fichet h-i righe n-Ereann do Laoghaire mac Nell
Naoighiallaigh at-bath i t-taobh Caissi edir Erinn & Albain .i. da cnoc
iad-sidhe filet i n-Uibh Faoláin, & grian & gaoth ros-marbh-somh ar na
sharaigh iad. Conidh do sin at-bert an fili,
At-bath Laoghaire mac Nell
for taob Caissi, glas a tír,
duile Dé ad-raegaid raith
tucsat dail m-bais forsan righ.
Note that in this verse, they are identified as duile Dé. Dennis found what
appears to be the source in the Book of Leinster. As he posted:
>I found this account beginning on line 40 in the right-hand column, at:
... Conid air sin tucsat
na dúle dáil báis do Loegaire i taeb chasse
.i. talam da shlugud 7 grian da loscud 7 gaeth
da dulaud [= dolud].
Note that here, they are "na dúle," no God. Also as Dennis noted:
>What is interesting here is the triplication:
"earth swallowing him and sun burning him and wind bearing down on him"
This resonates with all sorts of passages, including the alleged boasts to
Alexander: "we fear only the sky falling and the earth opening up."
So, the power of the universe is being invoked--regardless of the purpose.
To put it another way, power itself is neutral.
grian--sun (I don't see a fada)?
muir, nem & talam--sea, sky, and earth (the cosmic trio)
>im ithe na n-uball út, uair is ar a grád & inmaine tuccad ó Lígaig ingin
>Interesting things in this passage are, a scholar is summoned to place
>the curse. The curses are both sinister and heathen.
What makes them "heathen"? Invoking the du/ile isn't heathen per se. Saints
invoke them all the time; the Creator is addressed as the Lord or Master of
the du/ile. Ortha and loricae invoke them, too.
>The messengers call on the eight universal things, using the preterite
>active form of the verb guidid (which means to request but also to pray) to
>beseech Cathal to eat the apple.
But is this a "heathen" prayer in the eyes of the story_teller or is it
"heathen" according to your definition of what makes something heathen? is
this so different from the fert filed worked by the poets who claimed to
have caused the death of Lord John Stanley?
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