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PAGE 9

The literal rendering adopted for the poem runs thus:


Etain is here thus
at the elf-mound of the Fair-Haired Women west of Alba among little children to her
on the shore of the Bay of Cichmaine.

It is she who cured the eye of the king from the Well of Loch da lig,
it is she who was drunk in a draught by the wife of Etar in a heavy draught.

Through war for her the king will chase the birds from Tethba,
and will drown his two horses
in the lake da Airbrech.

There shall be abundant and many wars through the war for thee on Echaid of Meath, destruction shall be on the elf-mounds, and war upon many thousands.

It is she who was hurt in the land (?), it is she who strove to win the king, it is she as compared to whom men men speak of fair women, it is she, our Etain afterwards.


Line 2. "West of Alba" is literally "behind Alba," iar n-Albai: iar is, however, also used in the sense of "west of."

Line 14 is given by Windisch "through the war over Meath rich in horses"; this is impossible.

The translation of line 17 is not quite certain; the literal translation of the MS. seems to be "it is she who was hurt and the land." Da Airbrech in line 12 may mean "of two chariots."



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Map of Ireland