Liz Gabay wrote:
>>> Huallach doluig Tadg i tresaib
>>> ciarbo garg i n-aisib
>>> isa tir ar druing tosaich
>>> i crich cian uill caisil.
>>> Huallach doluid Tadc i treasaib [/] ciarbo garg i n-aisib
>>> Isa tir ar druing ar tosaig [/] i crich chian uill caisil
> Proudly in battle came Tadc
Or 'Proudly came Tadg into battle'. I think it is a little clearer if we
leave the prepositional phrase where it is. On the other hand, 'into'
might take the accuasative plural, rather than the dative. So perhaps
the meaning is 'Proudly Tadg went [when] in battle'.
> Who was fierce in (his) age
> I could not find the phrase ‘i n-aisib’ in DIL but I found ‘aés’
> used in the plural dative after the preposition ‘íar’ to refer to
> the age of a man at DIL A 80.12-15.
But this doesn't fit: we need a short 'a' to provide the rhyme with
> Or could ‘i n-aisib’ be in contrast to ‘ar tosaig’ for poetic
> reasons. In which case it would mean ‘in the back parts’ referring
> to the back parts of the battle. But I could not find ‘ais’
> (back, hinder part) used in that sense in DIL. Also it doesn't make
> sense to say that he is in the back of the fight in one
> line, and then put him into the vanguard in the next line.
Nevertheless, I think 'ais' (back) is likely to be our word. It seems
plausible that idiomatic expressions involving 'cenn' (head > extremity)
might tend to mirror those with 'ais' (rear > extremity). So if 'i cenn'
= 'in front of, ahead' (eg DIL C 124.79), perhaps 'i n-ais' = 'to the
rear' and 'i n-aisib' = 'on all sides'.
Thus we find similar constructions with the preposition 'ar': 'ar
chiunn' = 'in front of, ahead'; 'ar cech ais' DIL A 243.85 = 'on all
>‘ciarbo’ looked like ‘cia’ plus 3rd singular perfect of the copula
> so I thought it referred to Tadc rather than the battles.
That makes sense, but perhaps it refers to the conditions generally. (Cf
English "I went into three of the tents though it was hot and humid
> Into the land for a band, in front
'ar druing' = in front of a company (of soldiers)
'ar tosaig' = '(at) first'
I think the sense is "[marching] first into the enemy's land at the head
of a company of soldiers"; that is, he was alsways first into battle, at
the head of the vanguard.
I think BB took 'ar tosaig' to describe 'drong' (the leading company),
and that is why it omitted the 'ar'. But given that the metre suggests
Lec. is correct in reading an 'ar' before it, I think it describes Tadg:
he is both 'ar tosaig' and 'ar druing' - first, and at the head of a
company of soldiers. The word order may be a bit strained beacuse of the
need to give the consonance with 'i treasaib'.
> Into (the) distant proud territory of a stone fort.
> I thought ‘uill’ was a genitive form of ‘uall’ (pride).
> To me, ‘of pride’ and ‘proud’ have basically identical meanings in
> English in this context.
I don't think that works. Even though 'úall' can be o,m, the vowel is
long - it would not provide the necessary internal rhyme with 'druing'.
Rather I think we have here the genitive of 'oll' (great) which occurs
as a substantive in the sense 'vast surface, expanse'. Here I think it
refers to the extensive lands ruled from Caisel - i.e. to the province
So what I got was:
"Proudly Tadg came into (went when in?) combats
Though it was fierce on all sides (?)
[He was] first into the field, leading the van
in the distant territory of the Realm of Cashel."
We saw in §4 of 'Cath Crinna' that Cormac 'went to Tadc' to get his help
against Ulster, and in §15 that Tadc chose as a witness to his
annexation of land a servant whose mother was 'from Munster'. (That Tadg
had no northern lands save those Cormac offered him also indicates that
he is from Munster). So I think that the first verse of this poem is
chronicling Tadc's heroic deeds in Munster, prior to his service with