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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 1:24 pm 
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A Chairde,

I am trying to attempt a literal translation of an old Irish poem. It's quite difficult as some of the words, as Gaeilge, are not spelt in standard style, and the language is poetic which makes a literal translation challenging. I append a few stanzas below and I would appreciate it if anyone (!) could please improve/make suggestions to my translation, bearing in my that I want it to be fairly literal and faithful to the Irish.
Go raibh maith agaibh!


Ó bhfuínn fó dá ló go n-oíche;
Ach dúnaid a súile nuair chíd me,
Ní abraid, ‘‘Fuirig’’, ‘s ní chuirid im shuí me,
Is dá bhfaicidís trí mhailíbh rín me,
Ní bhacfaidís don staraí bheith ag imtheacht.[/i]

From the end of the day /eventide under the two days to night
But I close my eyes and weep
Not to utter ‘wait’ and not sit down to my feast
And if they saw three […?]
They would not hinder the historian from departing [?]

Do bhí tú ag Lúig id chúinge cuíonsgair
Ag claoi Bhalair, a dhanar ‘s a dhraoithe.
Do bhí tú maidhm i n-agha’ Mhac Míle
Ag teacht isteach tar neart na gaoithe;
Is ‘na dhiaig sin i gciantaibh ag Naoise.


You were with Lughaidh of the narrowness, delicate ??
Where Balor [was] defeated with his barbarians and his druids
You were routed by the son of Míl
(like) the force of the wind that comes in
And the conclusion of that age/era with Naoise

Is gann mo charaid, is dealbh ‘s is dithach
Bím i dtathamh ó mhaidean go hoíche
D’eagla an bháile ‘om chrá, ná an chíosa;
Is bíodh ar m’fhallaing, cé deacair dam innsint
Dá mhéid mo chreatha trí chealga an tí bhig


And my friends are scarce, destitute and wanting
I exist in a stupor from morning to night
For fear of the bailiff, than for torment of the rent
And though my cloak although difficult to relate
As much as I tremble, through the guile of (this) little house


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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 2:24 pm 
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Posts: 144
Quote:
Ó bhfuínn fó dá ló go n-oíche;
Ach dúnaid a súile nuair chíd me,
Ní abraid, ‘‘Fuirig’’, ‘s ní chuirid im shuí me,
Is dá bhfaicidís trí mhailíbh rín me,
Ní bhacfaidís don staraí bheith ag imtheacht.


This poem was transcribed with some notes by T. F. O'Rahilly in The Irish Monthly of May 1925.

He states: bhfuínn = bhfaghainn (conditionial)
fó = Mid. Ir. faigde, entertainment
mailí rín(e) = sullen eyebrows. [my comment: righin]
staraí - seanchaí

You start in the middle of a sentence. It is:
Is ní mhairean aon, do réir mar shílim,
D'fhialfhuil Ghall ná 'o sheandfhuil Mhíle,
Ó Léim na Con go portaibh Chlíona,
Ó bhfuínn fó dá ló go n-oíche;
Ach dúnaid etc

There isn't one left, as far as I know,
of the noble blood of the foreigners, or of the old blood of the Milesians,
from Loop Head to the shores of Clíona,
from whom I would get enjoyment by day till nightfall
but they close their eyes when they see me,
they don't say "Tarry!", neither do they make me sit down (e.g. at a feast),
and if they saw me through thick eyebrows (e.g. angry/sullen),
they would not hinder the storyteller from making a move (leaving).

You can sign up for free on Jstor and see some notes on it: https://www.jstor.org/stable/20517651?r ... b_contents


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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 2:44 pm 
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Do bhí tú ag Lúig id chúinge cuíonsgair
Ag claoi Bhalair, a dhanar ‘s a dhraoithe.
Do bhí tú maidhm i n-agha’ Mhac Míle
Ag teacht isteach tar neart na gaoithe;
Is ‘na dhiaig sin i gciantaibh ag Naoise.

You were the battle champion with Lughaidh [cuinge = champion; cuíonsgair = coimheascair]
Subduing Balar, his Dane/foreigner and his druids. [claoi = cloí; maybe Danar can be a singular with collective meaning: his Danes, his Vikings]
You were routing (against) the Milesians [maidhm can't be a noun, because there is no copula. I think it means do bhí tú ag maidhm; we don't need "against" in English, but the Irish has it here. The sons of Mil = the Milesian race]
Coming in beyond the strength of the wind [?? or maybe the tar goes with teacht: taking precedence over the strength of the wind?]
And after that with Naoise in his distant parts. [? cian can be distant time or place]


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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 2:58 pm 
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Joined: Thu 27 May 2021 3:22 am
Posts: 144
Quote:
And my friends are scarce, destitute and wanting
I exist in a stupor from morning to night
For fear of the bailiff, than for torment of the rent
And though my cloak although difficult to relate
As much as I tremble, through the guile of (this) little house


ná an chíosa: for fear of the bailiff or of the rent [ná can be used where the context is negative, but there is no negative word it relates to]
Bíodh ar m'fhallaing: dar m'fhallaing is an imprecation "by my cloak!"
By my cloak, however difficult it is to relate how much I tremble though the treachery of this little house...

Once again, you haven't quoted a full sentence.
Is bíodh ar m'fhallaing, cé deacair dam innsint,
Dá mhéid mo chreatha trí cheala an trí bhig,
Gur measa liom ná a n-abraim, a Dhuinn ghil,
Mar do cailleadh ar easba na dí me!

By my cloak, however difficult it is to relate how much I tremble though the treachery of this little house, I would prefer it to anything I say, dear Donn, as I have died for want of drink! [???]

I'm not sure about all of this.


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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 3:38 pm 
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Joined: Fri 03 Sep 2021 1:09 pm
Posts: 4
oh many thanks indeed for your suggestions and guidance on this! It is much appreciated. I might be working with a defective copy, but I will look at O'Rahilly's version on JSTOR.

The other stanza I have is the following. I would be curious and grateful for your views on it and my attempted literal translation:

Do shára tú fáinleasa Fíonsgoth ,
Dún Léith-chraige is ré-chnoc an aoibhnis.
Ach marar bodhar tusa ó thromghuth na taoide,
Nó marar balbh do theanga agus th’insgne,
Nó mara bhfuarais bás mar chách, a Dhuinn ghil



You of the veritable vault of white blossom
The fort of Craglea and the royal hill of delight
But if you are deaf from the heavy voice of the tide
Or if your tongue and intellect were dumbed
Or if you found death like all others, dear Donn


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PostPosted: Fri 03 Sep 2021 9:16 pm 
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Joined: Thu 27 May 2021 3:22 am
Posts: 144
I think maybe you can have a better stab at it yourself if you're a genuine student of the Irish language. Marar does not mean "if". It means "if not". See Murar/munar.


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PostPosted: Sun 05 Sep 2021 6:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri 03 Sep 2021 1:09 pm
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no worries - many thanks for your help!


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PostPosted: Sun 05 Sep 2021 6:43 pm 
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I think I've learnt a lesson here - not to help people who don't seem to be bona fide students of Irish.


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PostPosted: Tue 14 Sep 2021 4:32 am 
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Posts: 445
djwebb2021 wrote:
I think I've learnt a lesson here - not to help people who don't seem to be bona fide students of Irish.


I try to help everyone regardless. It's good for the "archives" and I learn a lot in return.


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PostPosted: Sun 19 Sep 2021 11:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri 03 Sep 2021 1:09 pm
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actually I am a student of Irish... a student of good faith in fact.
But thank you for your assistance - as mentioned earlier, and again now, I do appreciate it.


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