“Only games and only
Till came Ferdiad to the ford!
Loved Ferdiad seemed to me
After me would live for aye!
Yesterday, a mountain’s size—
He is but a shade to-day!
“Three things countless
on the Tain
Which have fallen by my hand:
Hosts of cattle, men and steeds,
I have slaughtered on all sides!
“Though the hosts were
e’er so great,
That came out of Cruachan wild,
More than third and less than half,
Slew I in my direful sport!
“Never trod in battle’s
Banba[b] nursed not on her breast;
Never sprang from sea or land,
King’s son that had larger fame!”
[a] That is, Ferdiad.
[b] An old name for Ireland.
Thus far the Combat of Ferdiad with Cuchulain and the Tragical Death of Ferdiad.
[1-1] Stowe and Eg. 209.
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CUCHULAIN AND THE RIVERS
Now while the hosts proceeded from Ath Firdead (’Ferdiad’s Ford’) southwards, Cuchulain lay in his sickbed in that place. [LL.fo.89a.] Then came certain men of the Ulstermen thither to help and succour Cuchulain. [W.4205.] Before all, Senoll Uathach and the two sons of Gege: Muridach and Cotreb, to wit. And they bore him to the streams and rivers of Conalle Murthemni, to rub and to wash his stabs and his cuts, his sores and his many wounds in the face of these streams and rivers. For the Tuatha De Danann (’the Tribes divine of Danu’) were wont to put herbs and plants of healing and a curing charm in the waters and rivers of the territory of Conalle Murthemni, to help and to succour Cuchulain, so that the streams were speckled and green-topped therewith.
[1-1] This sub-title is supplied by Windisch.
[2-2] YBL. 40a, 1-2.
[3-3] YBL. 40a, 3.
Accordingly these are the names of the healing rivers of Cuchulain:—
Sas, Buan, Buas, Bithslan, Findglas (’Whitewater’), Gleoir, Glenamain, Bedg, Tadg, Telameit, Rind, Bir, Brenide, Dichaem, Muach, Miliuc, Cumung, Cuilind, Gainemain, Drong, Delt, Dubglas (’Blackwater’).
Then was the grave of Ferdiad dug by the men of Erin and his funeral games were held.
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