Hi, my comments
On 13 February 2016 at 07:55, David Stifter <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > batir -- looks like 3rd plural preterite of substantive verb "they were".
> It's the copula. The subst. verb would be "bátir".
As David said, we have copula here, not substantive verb.
1) The first clue is the length mark, all copula forms are unstressed, so
have no fadas, whereas the substantive verb is fully stressed, so there
would have been a fada there.
2) But say, we have just a manuscript, not a scholarly edition and fadas
are not supplied, then the second clue is the form itself. For substantive
verb one would rather expect bátar with an -a- in the second syllable,
whereas for the copula we can get both batar and batir
3) And the third clue is the sentence itself - we have 2 adjectives
following, so it is a guaranteed copula here. :)
> > fáilti -- looks like nominative or accusative plural or accusative
> singular of "fáilte joy, happiness...a welcome, a greeting", but I think it
> could also be a variant spelling of nominative singular form.
> Cautious: "fáilti" can also be the plural of the adjective "fáilid".
fáilid is an i-stem adjective, so in plural we get an ending -i + syncope
of the middle vowel + delenition of the -d (originally *-th) into -t-, that
is how we arrive at the form fáilti 'nom. pl.' Word meisc is also 'nom pl.'
and the subject of the sentence is obviously fir Ulad.
> > and their possession was good.
No, it is rather 'disposition', 'state of humour' here. Obviously, when
they get 'drunk and joyous' their disposition is bound to improve somewhat