Donnchad Ó Cuinn scríbas:
> > > Rolil menma mná Cáier do Néde, dobert uball n-argait
> > > do Néde ar a chairdess.
> > The mind of Cáier's wife was stuck on Néidiu. She gave a silver
> > apple to Néidiu (as a token) of her love.
> I read "ar a chairdess" as "in exchange for his love".
What a stupid mistake! Of course you're right!
> In the next line, "cuci", if we take the spelling at face value,
> should mean "to him", so that "7 dul cuci íarom" would literally be
> "and (her) going to him thereafter", rather than the other way around.
> The fact is, of course, that "cuci, cuc(c)ai" (to him) and "cuicce,
> cuccae" (to her) were not always kept very well sorted out, and the
> man doing the "going to" might make more sense culturally.
According to Carney (The Dating of Early Irish Verse Texts, 500-
1100, Éigse 19, p. 197 [BTW: Carney attempts the dating of nearly
20.000 lines of Irish verse in this article; unfortunately Amrae
Choluimb Chille is not included]) e and i had fallen together in
Saltair na Rann. He dates SnR to ca. 870. Most people however
date SnR to the later part of the 10th century. This is unfortunate
since Sanas Cormaic falls exactly in between the two dates. If
Carney's dating were correct we could assume for Sanas Cormaic
too, that the spelling -e or -i at the end of a word made basically no
I haven't especially looked at Sanas Cormaic as to whether the
spellings there of -e and -i conform to historically justified -e and -i,
or whether they are mutually interchangeable. Does anybody with
more Sanas Cormaic experience know?
When I translated this little story I simply assumed that the
spellings -e and -i meant nothing any more in Sanas Cormaic. But I
now see that I was too precipitate.
> > Néidiu made a dícend satire (or a pun: a chiefless satire, a satire
> > that made him without chief) about him
> That's an interesting thought: a pun! I have seen more different
> explanations and interpretations of what "glám dícenn" means and
> how it was enacted than I can keep track of. Do we have any way
> of knowing whether "dícenn" in "glám dícenn" is the forerunner of
> the modern word "dícheannach" (headless, leaderless), or of "dígeann"
> (extreme, extremity)? I gather that in either sense, OI "dícenn"
> was pronounced /d'i:g'eN/, so I suppose the ambiguity could have
> been entirely deliberate and "poetically" desirable.
This is a bit difficult: according to DIL there are three words dícenn:
1dícenn = "end, extreme limit", the forerunner of dígeann, 2dícenn =
a word which usually appears as an adjective to att "inflation,
tumour", but to which glám dícend is referred to by the editors, and
3dícend = "man who owns no chief, lordless", all three of them
supposedly pronounced /d'i:[log in to unmask]
The latter is a bit puzzling to me, because for "headless, lordless" I
would expect *díchenn /d'i:x'@N/ < dí + cenn in Old Irish. In fact
there is a verb díchennaid "to behead" which presupposes a
*díchenn "headless", but DIL doesn't list it.
Anyway, whatever the original meaning of glám dícenn (I don't know
anything about it), there was at least the possibility for Cormac to
play here with the different meanings of dícenn, and certainly
"lordless" makes good sense here at least as a "poetically