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Subject: Re: Baile Bricín §57.4-5
From: Liz Gabay <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Scholars and students of Old Irish <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 21 Apr 2005 21:59:31 +0100

text/plain (84 lines)

>>57. <snip> Iss ê benfus glas ndegiunoch 15) for îarcaine Êrenn 16) 7 is
>>cretmi 7 crîsdaidecht in domuin sen." 17) "Is môr uli", 18) ol
>>Fri rê Âeda engaig genfius 19) Tibraiti, adbir Baili in Scâil.

>>15) E: ndégenach
>>16) om. E
>>17) E: si
>>18) E: huili

   Thanks for the comments, David.  Here's my second attempt,
incorporating your ideas and comments, and Dennis's alternate translation,
which makes sense to me, although I didn't recognize the word 'woad'.
    I admit the entire passage and translation still doesn't make a lot of

    Here's what Merriam-Webster dictionary has to say about 'woad'.  Do
people know what this word means?  Or would a better translation be
something like "the blue dye bath"  or "the leftover blue dye"?  Or should
it be "green dye" since 'glas' could refer literally to the green color of
the grassy ground in Ireland?  I realize that doesn't quite fit with the
example of dyer's jargon that Dennis found.

  "Main Entry: woad
Pronunciation: 'wOd
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English wod, from Old English wAd; akin to Old High
German weit woad, Latin vitrum
Date: before 12th century
: a European herb (Isatis tinctoria) of the mustard family formerly grown
for the blue dyestuff yielded by its leaves; also : this dyestuff"

"Is é benfas glas ndéidenach for íarcaini Érenn ocus is tuigba creitme
ocus crístaidechta in domuin sin."  "Is mór uile," ol Bricín.
 Fri ré Áeda engaig genfes Tibraiti, adbar Baile an Scáil.

"It is he who will clap the bolt over the last after-dye of Ireland (It is
he that will obtain the final blue (green?) from the woad-bath (green dye
bath?) of Ireland) and he is a survivor of faith and of Christianity of
that world." "This is all great," said Bricín.

  During the time of vociferous Áed who will beget Tibraiti, the subject
of Baile an Scáil.

   I found 'tuigba' in the dictionary,  an adjective that's used as a
substantive with the meaning "survivor."

   So then 'cretmi' would be the genitive singular of the a stem
feminine 'creitem' (belief, faith) and 'crîsdaidecht' (Christianity,
Christendom)  is probably also a genitive form.  It looks like a genitive
plural as it stands, but does that make any sense?  Or should we amend it
to a genitive singular form, something like 'crístaidechta'?

I'd rather say, it's "uile" "all": "This is all great".

 I found examples of 'Fri ré' under the entry for 'ré' ("space,
interval...period,lapse of time").  See DIL R 20.57 "fri re in chorgais
during Lent".   I thought 'Âeda' was probably the genitive singular of the
man's name 'Aodh' (Hugh) but I don't know who an 10th or 11th century Aodh
might be.  It could also be the genitive of 'áed (fire).  What is the
usual Old Irish spelling of Modern Irish 'Aodh'?
   This line looks like it could be describing when the vision happened.

    'Engaig' looks like the genitive singular of the adjective 'engach'
("noisy, vociferous") and 'genfius/genfes' looks like the future relative
of 'gainithir' ("comes to life, is born...later begets, procreates".  DIL
G 25.50 says "In Middle and early Modern Irish active forms with the stem
gen (gein) are frequent."

  'adbir' looks like 'adbar' which translates "matter, material...of a
person makings of, fit to be...successors to particular offices...subject
matter...cause, ground, reason".  Is Tibraiti the subject of Baile an
  'Scál' has an interesting definition -- "supernatural or superhuman
being, phantom, giant, hero".

  Liz Gabay

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