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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Tochmarc Étaine


Tochmarc Étaine

[starting after gap] a thaigi ocus a gríanan co senistrib solsib fri techt ass ocus tobreth tlacht corcra impe ocus imchuirthe in gríanán sin lasin Mac Óc cach leth no théged ocus ba and contuiled cach n-aidchi occa chomaitecht do airec menman conda tanic a sult ocus a feth. ocus no  línta in gríanán sin do lubib boladmaraib ingantaib combo de forberedsi di bolod ocus blath na lubi sainemail logmar.

 Atchúas do Fuamnaig a ngrád ocus a mmíad doratad di lasin Mac Óc. Asbert Fuamnach fri Midir congarar deit do dalta co ndernsai chorai frib dib línaib ocus co ndechos for iarair Etaíne.  Dotháet techt co Mac nÓc o Midir ocus luidsi día acallaim ocus dolluid Fuamnach timchell calléic co mboí isin Bruig ocus tobert  in n-athaig cétnae fo Etaín conda bert asa gríanán forin fúamain forsa rabi ríam co cend .uii. mbliadna fo Herind conda timart athach gaíthe ar thrógi ocus lobrai conda corastár for cléthe tige la Ultu i mbátár oc ól co torchair isin n-airdig n-óir ro boí for láim mná Etair in chathmiled o Inbiur Cichmaine a coiciud Choncobair conda sloicside lasa loim gabais asind lestur co mbentai di suidiu foa broind combo ingen iar tain. Dobreth ainm di .i. Etain ingen Étair. Di bliadain déc ar mili trá o gein tuissech Etaini o Ailill cosa ngein ndedenach o Étur.


 Alta iarom Etain oc Inbiur Chichmuini la hEtar ocus .l. ingen impe di ingenaib tússech ocus ba hesseom noda biathad ocus no n-eted ar chomaitecht Etaini a ingini do gres. Lá n-and doib a n-ingenaib uilib isind inbiur oca fothrocud co n-accatar in marcach isa mmag cucu dond usciu. Ech dond tuagmar foran forlethan casmongach caschairchech foa suidiu. sídhalbrat uaine hi filliud immi. Ocus léne fo derginliud imbi. Ocus eo óir ina brut rosaiged a gúalaind for cach leth. Scíath argdidi co n-imbiul oir imbi fora muin. Scíatrach argit and. Ocus tul n-oir fair. Ocus sleg coicrind co fethan óir impi o irlond co cró ina laim. Folt findbudi fair co hetan. Sníthe óir fria étan conná teilged a folt fo agid. Assisedar sist forsin purt oc deiscin na n-ingen Ocus ro charsat na ingena uili. conid and asbertsom in laid seo sís
    Etain indiu sund amne oc Síd Ban Find iar n-Albai eter maccaib beccaib di for brú Inbir Cíchmuini. Is hí ro híc súil ind ríg a topor Locha Dá Líg is í asibed sin dig la mnaí nÉtair hi tromdig. Is tría ág dossib in rí inna héonu di Thethbí Ocus báidfid a dá ech i llind Locha Dá Airbre Bíat imda coicthe ili tríat ág for Echaig Midi íaid togal for sídib Ocus cath for ilmilib. Is í ro loited is tír is í archosnai in rig is í Be Find fris dogair is í ar nÉtaín iar tain.
   Etain indiu. .n. Dochúaid úadib in t-óclaech iar sain iocus ní fetatar can dodeochaid la cid iarom. O ránic in Mac Óc do acallaim Midir ní fornic Fuamnaig ara chiund ocus asbert .i. Midir fris bréc dorat in ben imond ocus día n-ecastar dí Etain do bith i nÉre. Ocus ragaid do denam uilc fria. Domuiniur is dóig bid fír ol Mac Óc. Atá Étaín ocom thigsi isin Bruig o chíanaib isin deilb hi tarfas uaitsiu. Ocus bes is cuice forobart in ben.
   Dotháet Mac Óc día thig fora chulu co farnic a gríanán nglainidi cen Etaín and. Immasoí in Mac nÓc for slict Fuamnaige co tarraid for Óenuch Bodbgnai oc tig Bresail Etarláin in drúad. Fosnopair in Mac Óc ocus benaid a cend di & dobert lais a cend sin co rrabi for brú in Broga. Acht chena iss ed islicht i nn-inud aile conid la Manandán ro marbait a ndís .i. Fuamnach ocus Midir i mBri Léith día n-ébrad.
    Fúamnach báeth bá ben Midir Sigmall is brí co mbilib i mBrí Léith ba láthar lan ro loiscthe la Manandán.

  - Lebor na hUidre


The Wooing of Etain

The Irish text picks up after a gap. Previous to this gap we learn that the Dagda had fathered a son with the wife of Elcmar and sent the child to foster with Midir, who by some accounts was also a son of the Dagda. The child, Oengus Mac Oc, fosters with Midir, believing Midir to be his father; when he finally asks who his real father is Midir takes him to the Dagda and asks that he be given land and formal acknowledgement. The Dagda acknowledges Oengus as his son, and tells him of a way to trick Elcmar out of possession of the Brugh na Boyne, which Oengus subsequently does. 
  Later Midir comes to visit Oengus on Samhain and sees two groups of boys fighting as Elcmar looks on in the distance; fearing Elcmar might cause trouble with Oengus if he goes out Midir volunteers to separate the boys. In the process his eye is put out by a stick that is thrown. Oengus calls on Dian Cecht to heal the eye, which he does, but Midir then refuses to stay and visit. He will only remain if Oengus gets him three things: an expensive chariot, a fine cloak, and the hand of Etain the most beautiful maiden in Ireland who is the daughter of a king of Ulster. Oengus can only secure Etain with the Dagda's help by meeting her father's demands to clear 12 plains, creating 12 rivers, and paying her father Etain's weight in gold and silver. 
  Oengus brings Etain to Midir and they are wed but he warns his foster father that he must be very careful around the jealousy of Fuamnach, who had been raised by a Druid and knew powerful magic. Oengus is concerned because he has promised to keep Etain safe. Midir doesn't listen though and after arriving back at his home Fuamnach transforms Etain into a pool of water, then flees. Eventually from the pool comes a worm who turns into a purple fly. Midir loves the fly as well as he had loved Etain in her human form, and Fuamnach learns of this and returns, using a blast of wind to carry Etain away and throw her about Ireland for seven years. Finally she lands on Oengus's cloak and he recognizes her, offering her a welcome into his own home....

  [starting after gap] his household and his crystal bower with a bright window for her going out and returning in. A purple covering was about her and the bower is brought there by Mac Óc each day with affection and he sleeps each night attending her until she found confidence and until she regained her cheerfulness and her tranquility. And the bower was filled with fragrant  wonderful herbs she subsists on both the scent and flowers of the excellent precious herbs.

  Fuamnach heard of his affection and the honor given her by Mac Óc. Fuamnach said to Midir "Call for your foster-son with agreed peace between you both and without a difference in seeking Etaín."
  Mac nÓc went to the house with Midir and when he was conversing Fuamnach went around meanwhile there to the Brug and puts the same blast of wind over Etaín which carries her away from the bower and from her garment, on a time ever of conflict for seven years around Ireland so that the gust of wind drove her in misery and weakness until she landed on the house posts of Ulster where warriors were with drink and she was thrown into the gold cup that was for the hand of the woman of Etair, wife of the champion of Inbiur Cichmaine in a territory of Choncobair, who she swallows with a sip taken out of the vessel with a strike she arises from it that she [Etain] was under her womb and was her daughter after that time. The name she bore from that is Etain daughter of Étair. One thousand twelve years then from the first birth of Etain from Ailill until the final birth from Étar.

 Afterwards Etain was at Inbiur Chichmuini with Etar, that is the girl was with daughters of premiere horsemen about her and he was the one who fed and nicely clothed them to attend his daughter Etain at her work. One day it happened to them that the girls on this occasion were at a river-mouth and were washing when they saw a horseman on the plain from the noble waters. A brown horse splendidly arched, broad above curly-maned curly-tailed beneath the aforementioned. A folding green cloak bending around him. And a red ornamented shirt on him. And gold brooch on the cloak reaches his shoulders on each side. A silver shield with a gold border on it on his neck. A shield-strap of silver and  a shield-boss of gold on it. And a spear bordered with gold bands on it from the butt of the spear to the hoop of the lance in his hand. Yellow hair on him to his forehead. A headband of gold against his forehead which keeps his hair from his face. He stops for a time there in that place gazing at the girl and all the girls loved him. So then he spoke the poem here;
    "Etain today is here thus at Síd Ban Find west of Albai among girl children at the border of Inbir Cíchmuini. It is she who cured the eye of the king from the spring of lake Dá Líg* it is she who was drunk in that drink of the woman Étair; a heavy drink. Because of her the king will attack* birds from Thethbí* and drown his two horses in the pool of lake Da Airbe 
Bíat* much war will be waged many hosts battling upon Echaig of Meath bringing destruction of Fairy mounds and battle of many thousands. It is she who will devastate the land, it is she that goes to the king, it is she Be Find*, she is called our Étaín now."
   Etain at that time went from the young man and was different afterwards and they didn't know whence he came from or yet went afterwards. 

    When the Mac Óc reached Midir to address him without help he didn't find Fuamnacht  and said, that is Midir [said], to him "The woman has deceived us and if she has learned that Etain was alive in Ireland. And she will have gone to perpetrate evil on her."
 "I believe it is likely to be true" said Mac Óc. "Étaín has been at my home at the Bruig for a time in that form displayed since going from you. And it may be towards her the woman is rushing."
   Mac Óc returned back to the house and found her crystal bower without Etaín there. The Mac nÓc 
turned around on the trail of Fuamnacht and overtook her at Óenuch Bodbgnai* at the house of Bresail Etarláin the druid.  The Mac Óc attacked her and he struck her head off so that he brought her head then with him to the Brú in Broga. But moreover, however, common people say in other versions it was Manannán who killed the two that is Fuamnach and Midir in Bri Léith. Some say:
    "Reckless Fúamnach was the wife of Midir, Sigmall was a hill of ancient trees, in Brí Léith was their full power burnt by Manannán."

......
This is where the available Irish text ends. In the story the strange rider's prediction comes to pass: Etain marries the king of Ireland. Midir finds her in her new form and wins a forfeit from the king - he claims a single kiss from Etain. When the two kiss she remembers her former life and Midir turns the two into swans who fly away. The king pursues them, fighting to get back his wife. Finally Midir makes 50 women look like Etain and tells the king he can keep her if he chooses the real one; instead the king mistakenly chooses his own daughter, who he fathers a daughter on. Etain and Midir return to the Sid together. 


I don't normally translate place names or people's names but in this case in the poem they are particularly interesting and an example of the word-play common in Old Irish material.
* Locha Dá Líg probably means lake of two glories
*in fairness this could also read "seek birds", but attack seemed to better fit the overall tone of the poem
*Thethbí - may be interpreted as "killing threshold"
* the name "Da Airbe Bíat" may mean "two numerous armies" or "two yew fences"
* Be Find, literally "White woman" but also meaning "bright woman" or "fair woman"
*Oenuch Bodbgnai - Harvest fair of the beautiful crow

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