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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 4, 1893.djvu/495

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The Edinburgh Dmnshenchas. 487

Spain, wife of Eochaid the Rough, son of Dua the Dark-grey. She was Lugh mac Ethlenn's foster-mother, and 'tis she that used to dig the plain. 1 Or 'tis there that she died. On the first day of autumn her tomb was built, and her lamentation was made and her funeral game was held by Lugh [whence we say Lugh- nasadh, " Lammastide". Five hundred years and a thousand before Christ's birth was that, and that assembly was held by every king who took Ireland until Patrick came, and there were five hundred assemblies in Tailtiu from Patrick down to the Black Assembly of Donnchad, son of Flann, son of Maelsechlainn]. And these are the three tabus of Tailtiu : crossing it without alighting; looking at it over one's left shoulder when coming from it ; idly casting at it after sunset. Whence Magh Tailten, " Taltiu's Plain."

Taltiu, slow Magmor's daughter,

'Tis she that cut down the forest.

Lugh's foster-mother, men declare,

The place of this assembly (is) round Tailtiu.

Also in BB. 403 a 30 ; H. 10 b; Lee. 513 a ; and R. 119 a i, from which the words in brackets have been taken. See also Silva Gadelica, ii, 514.

Tailtiu, now Teltown. in Meath. For traditions relating to the assembly or fair held there, see O'Mahony's Keatirrg, p. 301, and the Four Masters, A.M. 3370.

The above etymologvof Luglinasadh is also in Cormac's Glossary.

Donnchad, son of Flann Sirina, sonof Mael-shechlainn, was over-king of Ireland from A.D. 918 to A.D. 942. The " Black Assembly" means, perhaps, the assembly which, in A.D. 925, was prevented by Muirchertach, son of Niall.

[69. Benn Bairchi.] — Beand Bairchi, cidh dia ta? Ni ansa.

.1. Bairche boaire Rosa Ruaidhbuidhi, ba headh a shuidhi mbuachalla, in bheand, ^ is cuma argairead gach niboin oda Dun Sobairce go rige in mBoaind, 3 ni geilead mil dib mir fc^roil seach araile, «:^«aidh desin ata Beand Bairchi, zxcvail asb(?rt :

Bairchi boaire gu mbladh-

bai ag Rosa [leg. Ross] Ruadh roneartmhar

in beand, nach tlaith re duba,

a suidhi blaith buachalla.

Benn Bairchi, whence is it ?

Not hard (to say). Bairche, Ross Ruddy-yellow's cowherd, this was his herdsman's seat, the Benn, and (there) equally would he herd every cow from Dunseverick to the Boyne : and no (one) beast of them would graze a bit in excess of another. So thence is Bom Bairchi^ " Bairche's Peak," as said (the poet) :

1 I.e., to dig up the roots of the trees with which the plain was covered. ^ MS. mblaidh.