Fear a’ bhàta

Leggi in italiano

“Fear a ‘bhata” is a Scottish Gaelic song probably from the end of the 18th century and the legend (an anecdotal addition to the nineteenth century versions printed) says it was written by Sine NicFhionnlaigh (Jean Finlayson) of Tong, a small village on the Isle of Lewis (Hebrides) for a young Uig fisherman, Domhnall MacRath (Donald MacRae) who eventually married.
‘Fear’ translates as “man” and “Bhata” with “boat”: the man of the boat, or the boatman. Also written as Fear A Bhata, Fear Ah Bhata, Fhear A Bhata, Fhear Ni Bhata, Fhir A’ Bhata, Fir Na Fhata, O(h) My Boatman.

Homer Winslow
Homer Winslow

The song appears first published in The Scottish Gael byJames Logan, 1831 (with its score) in which it is classified as a slow and an iorram (the song to the oars that had the function of giving rhythm to the rowers, but at the same time it was also a funeral lament). “Fhir a bhata, or the boatmen, the music of which is annexed, is sung in the above manner, by the Highlanders with much effect. It is the song of a girl whose lover is at sea, whose safety she prays for, and whose return she anxiously expects.

The melody is a lament, sometimes played as a waltz (in instrumental versions) that lends itself to delicate and smooth arrangements

Maire Breatnach on fiddle (live at Dougie MacLean‘ s house)

There are many text versions of the song composed of about ten verses although in the most current recordings only the first three stanzas are sung mostly.

For the full text see

Scottish gaelic version

The girl is waiting for a visit of the handsome boatman who seems instead to prefer other girls! But she waits for him and frowns worried about the health of her handsome boatman.

Capercaillie from Get Out 1996

Superb and masterly recording a voice and the waves of the sea
 Talitha Mackenzie from “A Celtic Tapestry” vol. 2 1997

Alison Helzer  from Carolan’s Welcome, 2010.



English translation
Chorus:
Oh my boatman, na hóro eile
Oh my boatman, na hóro eile
Oh my boatman, na hóro eile
My farewell to you wherever you go
I
I often look from the highest hill
To try and see the boatman
Will you come today or tomorrow If you don’t come at all I will be downhearted
II
My heart is broken and bruised
With tears often flowing from my eyes
Will you come tonight or will I expect you
Or will I close the door with a sad sigh?
III
I often ask people on boats
Whether they see you or whether you are safe,
Each of them says
That I was foolish to fall in love with you.

Scottish Gaelic
Séist:
Fhir a’ bhàta, sna hóro eile
Fhir a’ bhàta, sna hóro eile
Fhir a’ bhàta, sna hóro eile
Mo shoraidh slàn leat ‘s gach àit’ an tèid thu
I
‘S tric mi sealltainn on chnoc as àirde
Dh’fheuch am faic mi fear a’ bhàta
An tig thu ‘n-diugh no ‘n tig thu màireach
‘S mur tig thu idir gur truagh a tha mi
II
Tha mo chridhe-sa briste brùite
‘S tric na deòir a’ ruith o m’ shùilean
An tig thu ‘n nochd no ‘m bi mo dhùil riut
No ‘n dùin mi ‘n doras le osna thùrsaich?
III
‘S tric mi foighneachd de luchd nam bàta
Am faic iad thu no ‘m bheil   thu sàbhailt
Ach ‘s ann a tha gach aon dhiubh ‘g ràitinn
Gur gòrach mise, ma thug mi  gràdh dhut

Irish Gaelic version

The Irish version appears for the first time in print in the Sam Henry collection entitled ‘Songs of the People‘. The songs were collected within 20 miles of Coleraine (Northern Ireland) from 1929 to 1939. It is an Irish Gaelic coming from Rathlin Island and more generally  widespread in Ulster, therefore with much resemblance to the Scottish Gaelic.

Niamh Parsons live and from Gaelic Voices 1999 (I, II, IV, V)

And why not! Let’s listen to this celtic-metal version of the German group founded by Ben Richter in 2001!
Thanateros ( I, II, V)

 

 

English translation (from here)
Chorus:
O Boatman and another “horo”! [i.e. welcome] /A hundred thousand welcomes everywhere you go
I
I went up on the highest hill
To see if I could see the boatman
Will you come tonight or will you come tomorrow?
If you do not come, I will be wretched
II
My heart is broken and crushed.
Frequent are the tears that run from my eyes. /Will you come today or when I’m longing for you, /Or shall I close the door with a tired sigh?
III
I gave you my love, and I cannot change that.
Not love for a year, and not just words of love,
But love from the beginning, when I was a child, /And I will never cease, even when my death bell tolls.
IV
My love promised me a dress of silk
He promised me that and a gray tartan
A gold ring where I’d see my reflection
But I’m afraid he has forgotten
IV
My heart is lifting
Not for the tailor or the harper
But for the navigator of the boat
If you don’t come, I’ll be very sad
Irish Gaelic (from here)
Chorus:
Fhir an bháta ‘sna hóró éile (1)
Fhir an bháta ‘sna hóró éile
Fhir an bháta ‘sna hóró éile
Ceád mile failte gach ait a te tú (2)
I
Théid mé suas ar an chnoic is airde,
Féach an bhfeic mé fear an bháta.
An dtig thú anoch nó an dtig thú amárach?
Nó muna dtig thú idir is trua atá mé.
II
Tá mo chroí-se briste brúite.
Is tric na deora a rith bho mo shúileann.
An dtig thú inniu nó am bidh mé dúil leat,
Nó an druid mé an doras le osna thuirseach?
III
Thúg mé gaol duit is chan fhéad mé ‘athrú.
Cha gaol bliana is cha gaol raithe.
Ach gaol ó thoiseacht nuair bha mé ‘mo pháiste,
Is nach seasc a choíche me ‘gus claoibh’ am bás mé.
IV
Gheall mo leanann domh gúna den tsioda
Gheall é sin, agus breacan riabhach
Fainne óir anns an bhfeicfinn íomha
Ach is eagal liom go ndearn sé dearmad
V
Tá mo croíse ag dul in airde
Chan don fidleir, chan don clairsoir
Ach do Stuirithoir an bhata
Is muna dtig tú abhaile is trua atá mé

NOTES
1) basically a non-sense phrase that some want to translate “and no one else” ie as “mine and no other”
2) or “mo shoraidh slán leat gach áit a dté tú”

My Boatman (english version)

LINK
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/foghlam/beag_air_bheag/songs/
song_03/index.shtml

http://www.celticartscenter.com/Songs/Scottish/FearABhata.html
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=121195
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2463
http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/compilations/fear.htm
http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/capercaillie/fear.htm
http://thesession.org/tunes/8919
http://blueloulogan.wordpress.com/2012/10/15/songs-of-logan-6-fear-a-bhata-the-boatman/

Puck Fair: a rebellious billy-goat

Leggi in italiano

In the Irish village of Killorglin, County Kerry (South-West Ireland), the most curious feast is celebrate in August: a wild goat is brought to the village and crowned king for three days and three nights (10, 11 and 12 August) . Put unfortunately in a cage, he is hoisted on a high scaffolding that dominates the houses of the village, to look curiously the activities to which his subjects are dedicated: up there, although imprisoned, the beak is abundantly fed of food and water, and at the end of the fair he is returned to his mountain!

VIDEO

VIDEO

KILLORGLIN FAIR

The fair is full of events: horse fair, livestock, craft stalls, street performers, music, parades with the band, dance and fireworks. As is the case with these traditional festivals, the origins are remote and lost in the Middle Ages, so legends are never lacking: the origins are presumably related to the Celtic religion when to celebrate a good harvest they interceded with the god Lughsee more); the legend tells of two rival clans, and of a mountain beak that has had the promptness to warn the village from the armed attack; so the warriors of the village in turn armed themselves and prepared their defense, succeeding in defeating the enemy clan. The beak instead of roasting was crowned King Puck and taken to parade. Other stories bring the legend back to the times of Oliver Cromwell and the “invaders” become the English who went to Ireland to subdue the Irish to the Crown. The soldiers bothered a group of goats, but the head of the pack the “puck” instead of fleeing to the hills, rushed to the town of Killorglin to “warn” the inhabitants.

Other legends indicate the origin of King Puck at the beginning of the nineteenth century: the fair was already flourishing and, as usual, the sellers paid heavy tax to local lord; when the British government made illegal to impose tolls at livestock, horse and sheep fairs, attorney Daniel O’Connell suggested to devote the fair exclusively to goats, as they were not mentioned in the document (August 10, 1808 ); and to show of good faith, a goat was hoisted on a stage at the top of the fair banner.

Historically the fair has obtained legal status from King James I of England and Ireland (and James VI of Scotland) in 1603.

re capro
“Kings may come and Kings may go. But King Puck goes on forever.” The sculpture was inaugurated on August 5, 2001

THE GOATS IN MYTHOLOGY

Heidrun

The goat is not an unusual animal in the Celtic tradition and generally represents fertility. The Amaltea goat fed baby Zeus and the Norse goat Heidrun dispenses mead from its udders to the Valalla warriors.
Fauns and satyrs in Greek and Latin mythology personify sexual desire and libido, the horned god with deer antlers or goat-ram horns became the syncretic god of pre-Christian religions and lent his image to the Devil.

Thus in mythology and religions, the female of goat was represented with a positive image, symbol of nourishment, fertility and abundance, while the male of goat had negative connotations.

In Irish folklore, the bocánach (a goblin-goat) infests the battlefields while in the Scottish Highlands the Glaistig (half woman and half goat) is a of the guardian waters of the cattle. With long, beautiful blonde hair, she hides her animal bottom under a long green dress and attracts men with a song or dance to drink their blood, but in many parts of Scotland, glaistig are considered protectors of livestock and of shepherds, as well as of children left alone by their mothers watching over grazing animals. (see more)

gruagach

An Poc ar Buile – The Mad Billy Goat

The song was composed by Dónal Ó Mulláin (1880-1965) in 1940, and made famous in the 60s by Seán Ó Sé: singer-farmer of Scrahans, violin and organ player, as well as a gifted dancer, he composed poems and songs in gaelic that were prized and immediately become popular.
Ar buile = bulling means “being angry” that the term in Irish Gaelic translates as “madness, frenzy”.
The beak thus becomes the symbol of the combative and indomitable Irish spirit!

The Chieftains from Water from the Well 2000

Liam Devally 1966 (what a voice!)

Gaelic Storm from Tree 2001

English translation
I
As I set out with me pike in hand To Dromore(1) town to join a meithil (2) Who should I meet but a tan puck goat(3)
And he’s roaring mad in ferocious mettle.
Chorus
Aill-il-lu puill-il-iu – Aill-il-lu it’s the mad puck goat.
II
He chased me over bush and weed And thru the bog the running proceeded,
‘Til he caught his horns in a clump of gorse
And on his back I jumped unheeded.
III
He did not leave a rock that had a passage through
Which he did not run with force to destroy me
And then he gave the greatest leap
To the big slope of Faille Bríce…
IV
When the sergeant stood in Rochestown(4)
With a force of guards to apprehend us
The goat he tore his trousers down And made rags of his breeches and new suspenders
V
In Dingle(5) Town the next afternoon The parish priest addressed the meeting
And swore it was The Devil himself He’d seen ridin’ on the poc ar buile
Irish gaelic
I
Ag gabháil dom sior chun Droichead Uí Mhóradha
Píce im dhóid ‘s mé ag dul i meithil
Cé casfaí orm i gcuma ceoidh
Ach pocán crón is é ar buile…
[curfá] Ailliliú, puilliliú, ailliliú tá an puc ar buile!
Ailliliú, puilliliú, ailliliú tá an puc ar buile!
II
Do ritheamar trasna trí ruillógach,
Is do ghluais an comhrac ar fud na muinge,
Is treascairt do bhfuair sé sna turtóga
Chuas ina ainneoin ina dhrom le fuinneamh…
III
Níor fhág sé carraig go raibh scót ann
Ná gur rith le fórsa chun mé a mhilleadh,
S’Ansan sea do cháith sé an léim ba mhó.
Le fána mhór na Faille Bríce…
IV
Bhí garda mór i mBaile an Róistigh
Is bhailigh fórsa chun sinn a chlipeadh
Do bhuail sé rop dá adhairc sa tóin ann
S’dá bhríste nua do dhein sé giobail…
V
In Daingean Uí Chúis le haghaidh an tráthnóna
Bhí an sagart paróiste amach ‘nár gcoinnibh
Is é dúirt gurbh é an diabhal ba Dhóigh leis
A ghaibh an treo ar phocán buile…

NOTES
1) Dromore (County of Tyrone, Northern Ireland) in 1798 was a notorious den of rebels so whoever braced the pike did it to fight against the British
2) Meithil (pronuncia MEH-hill) = work gang is a group of farmers who go to help for an “extraordinary” job in the nearby farm. In America, tradition is still rooted and is called “barn raising”
3) a crazy goat !! that is the billy goat (also called beak).
4) Cork County of Munster
5) Dingle (County of Kerry) and its territory were the scene of the “Second Desmond Rebellion” (1579-80)

LINK
http://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WMANF6_King_Puck_Killorglin_County_Kerry_Ireland
http://www.irishpage.com/songs/pocbuile.htm
http://www.celticartscenter.com/Songs/Irish/AnPocArBuile.html
http://celtana.ie/tag/daniel-oconnell/http://puckfair.ie/historyorigins
http://amayodruid.blogspot.it/2011_06_01_archive.html
http://stancarey.wordpress.com/2013/07/16/bulling-ar-buile-in-irish-english/
http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=43534 http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=27881

Báidín Fheidhlimidh

Leggi in Italiano

The island of Tory or better Oileán Thoraigh, is a grain of rice (measuring 5 km in length and 1 in width) 12 km off the northern coast of Donegal. Ancient fortress of the Fomorians that from here left to raid the coasts of Ireland, a race of primordial gods, like Balor of the Evil Eye, the Celtic god of darkness that had only one eye on the back of the head.
It is called the island of artists since a small community of painters has been established in the 1950s. The hundreds of people who live there are Gaelic speakers and have been “governed” since the Middle Ages by a king of the island: it is up to the king to explain the legends and traditions of the island to the tourists!

TORAIG~1
island of Tory
by Pixdaus 

Bright and verdant in summer it is flagellate from strong storms in the winter months, theater of great tragedies of the sea.
But above all it is a land of rabbits and birds among which we can distinguish the puffins of the sea with the characteristic triangular beak of a bright orange with yellow and blue stripes wearing the frak.

“UNA BARCHETTA IN MEZZO AL MAR”

“Phelim’s little boat” or “Báidín Fheidhlimidh” (Báidín fheilimi) is one of the “songs of the sea” and is taught to Irish children at schools being a rare example of a bilingual song. Almost certainly handed down for generations in oral form, the song may have been composed in the seventeenth century.
Despite appearing as a nursery rhyme, the ballad tells the story of Feilimí Cam Ó Baoill, or Phelim O’Boyle, who, to escape his bitter enemy, abandons Donegal. He was one of the Ulster leaders of the O’Neil clan, one of the largest tribal dynasty in Northern Ireland (see). A warrior-fisherman leader who, to avoid conflict with the Mac Suibhne clan, or Sweeney, takes the sea on a small boat to the island of Gola; but, still not feeling safe, he changes the route to the island of Tory, more jagged and rich in hiding places, even if more treacherous for the presence of the rocks. And right on the rocks the small boat breaks and Phelim drowns.

The Gaelic here is peculiar because it comes from Donegal and has different affinities with the Scottish Gaelic. Baidin is a word in Irish Gaelic that indicates a small boat and the concept of smallness returns obsessively in all verses; so the nursery rhyme has its moral: in highlighting the challenge and the audacity in spite of a contrary destiny, we do not have to forget the power of the sea and we must remind that freedom has a very high price.

Sinéad O’Connor from  Sean-Nós Nua 2002:  ua voice with such a particular tone; here the pitch is melancholic supported by a siren-like echo effect. In the commentary on the booklet Sinéad writes:
It tells the story of Feilim Cam Baoill, a chieftain of the Rosses [in Donegal] in the 17th century. He had to take to the islands off Donegal to escape his archenemy Maolmhuire an Bhata Bu Mac Suibhne. Tory Island was more inaccessible and seemed safer than Gola, but his little boat was wrecked there. For me, the song is one of defiance and bravery in spite of terrible odds. It is a song of encouragement that we should be true to ourselves even if being true means ‘defeat’. A song of the beauty of freedom. And a song of the power of the sea as a metaphor for the unconscious mind. It shows that we can never escape our soul.”

Na Casaidigh from Singing for memory 1998: a fine arrangement of the voices in the choir and a final instrumental left to the electric guitar in a mix between traditional and modern sounds very pleasant and measured.

Angelo Branduardi from Il Rovo e la Rosa 2013,  (his Gaelic is a bit strange!) the arrangement with the violin is very precious

English
I
Phelim’s little boat went to Gola,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it,
Phelim’s little boat went to Gola,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it
Chorus:
A tiny little boat, a lively little boat,
A foolish little boat, Phelim’s little boat,
A straight little boat, a willing little boat,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it.
II
Phelim’s little boat went to Tory,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it,
Phelim’s little boat went to Tory,
Phelim’s   little boat and Phelim in it.
III
Phelim’s little boat crashed on Tory,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it,
Phelim’s little boat crashed on Tory,
Phelim’s little boat and Phelim in it.
Donegal Gaelic
I
Báidín Fheidhlimidh d’imigh go Gabhla,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh ‘s Feidhlimidh ann
Báidín Fheidhlimidh d’imigh go Gabhla,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh ‘s Feidhlimidh ann
Curfá:
Báidín bídeach, Báidín beosach,
Báidín bóidheach, Báidín Fheidhlimidh,
Báidín díreach, Báidín deontach,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh’s Feidhlimidh ann.
II
Báidín Fheidhlimidh d’imigh go Toraigh,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh’s Feidhlimidh ann
Báidín Fheidhlimidh d’imigh go Toraigh,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh ‘s Feidhlimidh ann.
III
Báidín Fheidhlimidh briseadh i dToraigh,
Báidín Fheidhlimidh ‘s Feidhlimidh ann
Báidín Fheidhlimidh briseadh i dToraigh,
Báidín  Fheidhlimidh ‘s Feidhlimidh ann (1)

NOTES
1) or Iasc ar bhord agus Feilimí ann  [Laden with fish and Phelim on board]

THE DANCE: Waves of Tory

The island has also given the title to an Irish folk dance “Waves of Tory” which reproduces the waves breaking on the rocks! Among the dances for beginners is performed with one step and presents only a difficult figure called Waves.
see more

LINK
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=18074#177081

https://www.scottish-country-dancing-dictionary.com/dance-crib/waves-of-tory.html

Amhrán Na Bealtaine

Leggi in italiano

TITLES: Amhran Na Bealtaine, Samhradh, Summertime, Thugamur Fein An Samhradh Linn (We Brought The Summer With Us, We Have Brought The Summer In) or Beltane Song
It is a traditional Irish tune sung on May Day (Lá Bealtaine).

Charles Daniel Ward: Processing of Spring -1905
Charles Daniel Ward: Processing of Spring -1905

AMHRAN NA BEALTAINE

A Gaelic Summer song that could date back to the late Middle Ages played in the feast for the landing of James Butler Duke of Ormonde in 1662, the new Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. It is a traditional song in the southeastern part of Ulster (Northern Ireland) and it was sung by young men and women on May Eve, while they carried around the Garland of May.
Most likely this was a begging song to get food or drink in exchange for the May branch, tabranch of hawthorn or blackthorn to be left in front of the door. With this auspicious gesture, the inhabitants are protected from fairies because fairies could not overcome these flowered barriers (see more).

The song is still very popular in Ireland, Oriel area (t included parts of Louth, Monaghan and Armagh) and is performed both in instrumental version and sung.
Edward Bunting states that the song had been played in the Dublin area since 1633.
 TUNE noted by EDWARD BUNTING
The Chieftains (a instrumental version that is a hymn to joy, a song of birds awakening to the call of spring: the Irish flute starts imitating a lark followed in musical canon by some
wind instruments (the Irish flute, the whistle and the uillean pipes) and the violin, great!)

Gloaming  live Samhradh Samhradh (Martin Hayes fiddle)

Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin from A Stór Is A Stóirín 1994 

English translation*
I
Mayday doll(1),
maiden of Summer
Up every hill
and down every glen,
Beautiful girls,
radiant and shining,
We have brought the Summer in.
CHORUS
Summer, Summer,
milk of the calves(2),
We have brought the Summer in.
Yellow(3) summer
of clear bright daisies,
We have brought the Summer in.
II
We brought it in
from the leafy woods(4),
We have brought the Summer in.
Yellow(3) Summer
from the time of the sunset(5),
We have brought the Summer in.
III
The lark(6) is singing
and swinging around in the skies,
Joy for the day
and the flower on the trees.
The cuckoo and the lark
are singing with pleasure,
We have brought the Summer in.
Irish gaelic
I
Bábóg na Bealtaine,
maighdean an tSamhraidh,
Suas gach cnoc
is síos gach gleann,
Cailíní maiseacha
bán-gheala gléasta,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn
Sèist
Samhradh, samhradh,
bainne na ngamhna,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn.
Samhradh buí
na nóinín glégeal,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn.

II
Thugamar linn
é ón gcoill chraobhaigh,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn.
Samhradh buí
ó luí na gréine,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn
III
Tá an fhuiseog ag seinm
‘sag luascadh sna spéartha,
Áthas do lá
is bláth ar chrann.
Tá an chuach is an fhuiseog
ag seinm le pléisiúr,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn.

NOTES
* from here
garlan-may-day1) the Bábóg is the spring doll, Brídeóg, the “little Bride”, (Brigit, or Brigantia in Britannia, a trine goddess -Virgin, Mother, Crona) among the most important of the Celtic pantheon, the maiden of wheat made by women in Imbolc (February 1) with the last sheaf of harvest; the young Goddess of Spring, a strong symbol of rebirth in the cycle of death-life in which Nature is perpetuated: in the doll still lives the spirit of the wheat. Brigid’s dolls were also dressed in a white dress, decorated with stones, ribbons and flowers and carried in procession throughout the village.
The doll will reappear in the Victorian celebrations of May in her white-robed, placed between a wreath of flowers and ribbons hanging on a rod and carryed by mayers (see more)
2) milk from cows for calves. The May Day is called na Beal tina or the day of the fire of Beal, then consecrated to the god Bel or Belenos. On the eve large fires were lit and the cattle were passed among them, this celtic custom is still remained in the Irish countryside with the belief that this prevented the Wee Folk to make bad jokes like braiding the tails of the cows or stealing the milk
3) the May flowers were mostly yellow to recall the color and the warmth of the sun. Flowers and green branches were placed on the threshold of the house and window sills to protect the inhabitants from the fairies and as a sign of good fortune. Fairies could not overcome these flowered barriers. This tradition was typical of Northern Ireland. The children mostly went to pick wild flowers to make garlands, especially with yellow flowers.4) the greenwood, the most inviolate and sacred forest of the ancient Celtic rituals

Bringing Home the May, 1862, Henry Peach Robinson
Bringing Home the May, 1862, Henry Peach Robinson

5) the youth go into the woods at night of the eve till the morn  (see more)
6) the lark is a sacred bird with solar symbolism (see more)
7) the song of the cuckoo is a harbinger of Spring, also because once the season of love is over (end of May), the cuckoo (male) no longer sings  (see more)

Extra verses 

English translation (*)
Holly and hazel
and elder and rowan,(1)
We have brought the Summer in.
And brightly shining ash
from Bhéal an Átha,(2)
We have brought the Summer in
Irish Gaelic
Cuileann is coll
is trom is cárthain,
Thugamar féin
an samhradh linn
Is fuinseog ghléigeal Bhéal an Átha,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn.

NOTES
1) The hawthorn is a fairy plant like holly, hazel, elderberry and rowan, protective and auspicious (probably due to the very sharp thorns). The May tradition places the branch of hawthorn outside the house (hanging on the windows and next to the entrance) because if it is brought into home, especially when it is flowered, brings bad luck. This negative meaning dates back to the Middle Ages when the branches of hawthorn were used as amulets against the evil eye, witches and demons; it might be traced back to the vague rotting smell of the branches, but it is certainly linked to the Church’s attempt to assimilate pre-Christian rites to satanic practices.
2) Bhéal an Átha literally the mouth of the ford is also a place known today as Ballina a city on the river Moy in the Mayo counts. However, the settlement is relatively recent (late 15th century). Na Bealtaine is more likely to refer to a toponym Beulteine as it was called the place of the Beltane festival on the border between the county of Armagh and that of Louth, in Kilcurry, today there are only a small mound with the ruins of an old church. All versions collected in the area describe a radius around this location of about twenty miles

Bábóg na Bealtaine, Other Tunes

La Lugh (Eithne Ní Uallacháin & Gerry O’Connor) from Brighid’s Kiss 1995. Tune composed by Eithne Ní Uallacháin (I, III,IV, V, VI)

Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin has reinterpreted the song, previously published on the tune transcribed by Edward Bunting, on the tune and text as transcribed by Séamus Ennis from the testimony of Mick McKeown, Lough Ross recorded on a wax cylinder (I, II, III, IV, V , VII)

English translation*
I (CHORUS)
Golden Summer of the white daisies,
we bring the Summer with us,
from village to village
and home again,
and we bring the Summer with us.
I Mick McKeown version
Golden summer, lying in the meadows,
we brought the summer with us;
Golden summer, spring and winter,
and we brought the summer with us.

II
Young maidens, gentle and lovely,
we brought the summer with us;
Lads who are clever, sturdy and agile,
and we brought the summer with us.
III
Beltaine dolls,
Summer maidens
Up hill and down glens
Girls adorned
in pure white,
and we bring the Summer with us.
IV
The lark making music
and sky dancing
the blossomed trees laden with bees
the cuckoo and the birds
singing with joy
and we bring the Summer with us.
V
The hare nests on the edge of the cliff
the heron nests
in the branches
the doves are cooing,
honey on stems
and we bring the Summer with us.
VI
The shining sun is lighting the darkness
the silvery sea shines like a mirror
the dogs are barking,
the cattle lowing
and we bring the Summer with us.
VII
Golden summer, lying in the meadow,
we brought the summer with us;
From home to home and to Lisdoonan of pleasure,
and we brought the summer with us.
Irish Gaelic
I
Samhradh buí na nóiníní gléigeal,
thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn,
Ó bhaile go baile is chun ár mbaile ’na dhiaidh sin,/’s thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn
(Mick McKeown version
Samhradh buí ’na luí ins na léanaí,
thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn;
Samhradh buí, earrach is geimhreadh
is thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn.)
II
Cailíní óga, mómhar sciamhach,
thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn;
Buachaillí glice, teann is lúfar,
is thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn.
III
Bábóg na Bealtaine,
maighdean an tsamhraidh
suas gach cnoc is síos gach gleann
cailíní maiseacha, bángheala gléasta,/’s thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn
IV
Tá an fhuiseog ag seinm is ag luasadh sna spéartha,
beacha is cuileoga is bláth ar na crainn,
tá’n chuach’s na héanlaith ag seinm le pléisiúr,/’s thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn
V
Tá nead ag an ghiorria ar imeall na haille,
is nead ag an chorr éisc i ngéaga an chrainn,
tá mil ar na cuiseoga is na coilm ag béiceadh,/’s thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn.
VI
Tá an ghrian ag loinnriú`s ag lasadh na dtabhartas,
tá an fharraige mar scathán ag gháirí don ghlinn,
tá na madaí ag peithreadh is an t-eallach ag géimni
’s thugamar fhéin an samhradh linn
VII
Samhradh buí ’na luí ins a’ léana,
thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn;
Ó bhaile go baile is go Lios Dúnáin a’ phléisiúir,
is thugamar féin a’ samhradh linn.

* from here and here

 

Amhrán na Craoibhe (The Garland Song)

LINK
http://ontanomagico.altervista.org/beltane-la-festa-celtica-del-maggio.html
http://songsinirish.com/samhradh-samhradh-lyrics/
http://www.celticartscenter.com/Songs/Irish/ThugamarFeinAnSamhradhLinn.html

https://thesession.org/tunes/10447

https://www.orielarts.com/songs/thugamar-fein-an-samhradh-linn/

Dún do shúil, a lullaby from the irish sea

Leggi in italiano  

Dún do shúil, (“Close Your Eyes”) is a lullaby in Irish Gaelic in which the mother cradles her hungry child telling him that Dad has gone hunting and that he will bring some fresh fish. Perhaps dating back to the age of the great famine when the poor people died because of the disease of the potatoes; or it could simply be the beginning of summer (which according to Gaelic custom begins with Beltane) the worst period for those who live on the fruits of the earth, because the provisions accumulated for the winter are almost finish.

Altan (voice Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh) from Local Ground 2005
For the TV series Anam an Amhráin the singing becomes waves of the sea and the child dreams of his father with his boat that magically navigates among the hills and the stars

CLOSE YOUR EYES *
Close your eyes, O love of my heart
My everything and my love
Close your eyes, O love of my heart
And you will get a reward tomorrow
I
Your dad is coming from the hills
With game and grouse in plenty
So close your eyes, my love, my joy
And you will get a reward tomorrow
II
The summer sun shines bright and warm
And potato stalks grow greener
A bracing breeze blows from the south
And we will have fish tomorrow
DÚN DO SHÚIL
Dún do shúil, a rún mo chroí
A chuid den tsaol, ‘s a ghrá liom
Dún do shúil, a rún mo chroí
Agus gheobhair feirín amárach
I
Tá do dheaid ag teacht gan mhoill ón chnoc
Agus cearca fraoich ar láimh leis
Agus codlaidh go ciúin ‘do luí sa choid
Agus gheobhair feirín amárach
II
Tá an samhradh ag teacht le grian is le teas
Agus duilliúr ghlas ar phrátaí
Tá an ghaoth ag teacht go fial aneas
Agus gheobhaimid iasc amárach

Lullabies & Nursery Rhymes (Ninnananne e Filastrocche)


LINK
http://songsinirish.com/p/dun-do-shuil-lyrics.html
http://www.irishgaelictranslator.com/translation/topic12997.html
http://www.celticlyricscorner.net/meav/close.htm

AMHRÁN MHUÍNSE

Leggi in italiano

“Amhrán Mhuighinse” is an irish farewell  from the death bed; it is a traditional Irish gaelic sean-nós lament in which the singer has become old and, waiting for the day of his death, asks to be buried next to his/her beloved ones.
Often the singer is an old woman, who has moved away from her family home to follow her husband, but who considers stronger the bond with her clan and wants to go home.

https://www.flickr.com/people/[email protected]/

Usually for this type of song, the composer is known and “Amhrán Mhuighinse” was attributed to a woman who lived in the nineteenth century, Máire (Mairín) Ní Chlochartaigh. She was married to Taimín Bán Ó Conghaile of Leitir Calaidh but she asked to be buried in Mhuighinse where she was from (Mainis or Mweenish Island near Carna, County Galway).
But the weather was so bad for three days after her death that it wasn’t possible to make the boat trip to Muighinis and she was buried in Leitir Calaidh instead.
Líadan

THE SONG OF MAÍNIS *
I
If I were three leagues out at sea
or on mountains far from home,
Without any living thing near me
but the green fern and the heather,
The snow being blown down on me,
and the wind carring it away,
And I were to be talking to my Taimín Bán (1)
and I would not find the night long.
II
Dear Virgin Mary, what will I do,
this winter is coming on cold.
And, dear Virgin Mary, what will this house do and all that are in it?
Were you not young, my dear, when you went away during the good times, when the cuckoo sang its song and all the every green leaf was growing?
III
If I have my children home with me
the night that I will die,
They will wake me in mighty style
three nights and three days;
There will be fine clay pipes
and well-filled kegs (2),/ And there will be three mountainy women to keen (3) me when I’m laid out (4).
IV
And cut my coffin out for me,
from the choicest brightest boards;
And if Seán Hynes (5) is in Mweenish (6) Have it made by his hand./Let my cap and my ribbon be inside in it (7), and be placed stylishly on my head,/ And Big Paudeen will take me to Mweenish/Or the day will go wrong.
V
As I’m going west past Sandy Isle (8),
let the flag be on the mast (9).
don’t bury me in Leitir Calaidh (10),
for it’s not where my people are,
But bring me west to Mweenish
to the place where I will be mourned aloud;
There’ll be light on the sandhills,
and I will not be lonely there.
AMHRÁN MHUÍNSE
I
Dhá mbeinn trí léig i bhfarraige
nó ar sléibhte i bhfad ó thír
Gan aoinneach beo i mo ghaobhar ann ach raithneach ghlas is fraoch,
An sneachta á shéideadh anuas orm, is an ghaoith dhá fhuadach díom,
‘S mé a bheith ag comhrá le mo Taimín Bán,
níorbh fhada liom an oíche.
II
A Mhuire dhílis, céard a dhéanfas mé, tá an geimhreadh seo ‘tíocht fuar,
A Mhuire dhílis, céard a dhéanfas an teach seo is a bhfuil ann?
Nach óg, a stór, a d’imigh tú, le linn na huaire breá,
Le linn don chuach bheith ag seinm ceoil,
gach duilliúr glas ag fás.
III
Má bhíonn mo chlann sa mbaile a’am an oíche a bhfaighidh mé bás,
Ó tórróidh siad go groíúil mé trí oíche is trí lá;
Beidh píopaí deasa cailce a’am agus ceaigeannaí is iad lán,
Beidh triúr ban óg ó shléibhte ann le mé a chaoineadh os cionn cláir.
IV
Is gearraí amach mo chónra dhom as fíorscoth geal na gclár,
Má tá Seán Ó hEidhin i Muighnis bíodh sé déanta ón a láimh;
Bíodh mo chaipín is mo ribín inti istigh, é go rídheas ar mo cheann,
Tabharfadh Paidín Mór go Muighnis mé nó is garbh a bhéas an lá.
V
Gabháil siar thar Inse Gaine dhom bíodh an bhratach insa gcrann,
Ná cuir’ i Leitir Caladh mé mar ní ann atá mo dhream;
Ach tugaí siar go Muighnis mé
‘n áit a gcaoinfear mé go hard,
Beidh soilse ar na dúmhchannaí – ní bheidh uaigneas orm ann.

NOTES
* see link for transaltion references
1) the Taimín Bán mentioned in the song doesnt translate as ‘fair Taimín’ but as his actual name, Taimín Bán Ó Conghaile.
2) The Irish wake takes place with food, drink (especially the poteen and irish whiskey), pipe smoking, music and singing, dancing and games
3) The keener is usually paid for her services-the charge varying from a crown to a pound, according to the circumstances of the employer.
4) The corpse was placed on a table in plain sight (in the living room or at least in the best room of the house) making sure that a group of visitors was always ready to surround the body to prevent the evil spirits to take the soul
5) Mweenish was well known for the building of traditional sailing boats, Galway Hookers.
6) Maínis or Mweenish is an island off the Conamara coast in the heart of the Conamara Gaeltacht. The island is close to Carna and linked to the mainland by a bridge. It is noted for its isolation and rugged beauty
7) the corpse was placed in the coffin with the objects that the deceased had with him at the time of death or with the objects he had most dear to prevent his spirit returning to look for them
8)  Inse Gaine, or Sand Island
9) according to Séamus Ó Dúbháin (from Ard Mór, Cill Chiaráin) the flag was one which he used to wave at boats passing by her home in Leitir Calaidh
10) Lettermore island is in two halves. The eastern half is known as Lettermore, while the western half is known as Lettercallow (Leitir Calaidh, “rough hillside by a marshy area”).

 

LOOK AT THE COFFIN: AN IRISH WAKE

 https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/aignish-on-the-machair/

LINK
https://archive.org/details/blasmealasipfrom00orou
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/amhr%C3%A1n-mhu%C3%ADnse-song-muighinis.html
http://blaise.ca/blog/2013/06/29/amhran-mhuinse/
http://songsinirish.com/amhran-mhainse-lyrics/

AMHRÁN MHUÍNSE

Read the post in English  

“Amhrán Mhuighinse” è un farewell in gaelico irlandese, cantato nel “vecchio stile” (sean-nós ), un lament in cui chi canta è diventato vecchio e nell’attendere il giorno della sua morte chiede di essere seppellito accanto ai suoi cari.
Spesso si tratta del canto di una donna,  la quale si è trasferita lontano dalla sua casa di famiglia per seguire il marito, ma che considera più forte il legame con gli antenati del suo clan e vuole ritornare nel cimitero del suo paese per riunirsi con loro.

https://www.flickr.com/people/[email protected]/

Spesso gli autori di questi lament sono noti e “Amhrán Mhuighinse” è stato attribuito a una donna vissuta nell’Ottocento di nome  Máire (Mairín) Ní Chlochartaigh sposata con Taimín Bán Ó Conghaile di Leitir Calaidh (l’isola di Lettermore) che in punto di morte volle essere sepolta nella sua isola Mainis (Mweenish Island).
Secondo quanto raccolto dalle testimonianze venne invece sepolta nel cimitero di Leitir Calaidh perchè nei giorni del suo funerale imperversò una brutta tempesta che impedì la traversata per mare.
Líadan

AMHRÁN MHUÍNSE
I
Dhá mbeinn trí léig i bhfarraige nó ar sléibhte i bhfad ó thír
Gan aoinneach beo i mo ghaobhar ann ach raithneach ghlas is fraoch,
An sneachta á shéideadh anuas orm, is an ghaoith dhá fhuadach díom,
‘S mé a bheith ag comhrá le mo Taimín Bán, níorbh fhada liom an oíche.
II
A Mhuire dhílis, céard a dhéanfas mé, tá an geimhreadh seo ‘tíocht fuar,
A Mhuire dhílis, céard a dhéanfas an teach seo is a bhfuil ann?
Nach óg, a stór, a d’imigh tú, le linn na huaire breá,
Le linn don chuach bheith ag seinm ceoil, gach duilliúr glas ag fás.
III
Má bhíonn mo chlann sa mbaile a’am an oíche a bhfaighidh mé bás,
Ó tórróidh siad go groíúil mé trí oíche is trí lá;
Beidh píopaí deasa cailce a’am agus ceaigeannaí is iad lán,
Beidh triúr ban óg ó shléibhte ann le mé a chaoineadh os cionn cláir.
IV
Is gearraí amach mo chónra dhom as fíorscoth geal na gclár,
Má tá Seán Ó hEidhin i Muighnis bíodh sé déanta ón a láimh;
Bíodh mo chaipín is mo ribín inti istigh, é go rídheas ar mo cheann,
Tabharfadh Paidín Mór go Muighnis mé nó is garbh a bhéas an lá.
V
Gabháil siar thar Inse Gaine dhom bíodh an bhratach insa gcrann,
Ná cuir’ i Leitir Caladh mé mar ní ann atá mo dhream;
Ach tugaí siar go Muighnis mé, ‘n áit a gcaoinfear mé go hard,
Beidh soilse ar na dúmhchannaí – ní bheidh uaigneas orm ann.

THE SONG OF MAÍNIS *
I
If I were three leagues out at sea
or on mountains far from home,
Without any living thing near me
but the green fern and the heather,
The snow being blown down on me,
and the the wind carring it away,
And I were to be talking to my Taimín Bán
and I would not find the night long.
II
Dear Virgin Mary, what will I do,
this winter is coming on cold.
And, dear Virgin Mary, what will this house do
and all that are in it?
Were you not young, my dear, when you went away during the good times, when the cuckoo sang its song and all the every green leaf was growing?
III
If I have my children home with me
the night that I will die,
They will wake me in mighty style
three nights and three days;
There will be fine clay pipes
and kegs that are full,
And there will be three mountainy women
to keen me when I’m laid out.
IV
And cut my coffin out for me,
from the choicest brightest boards;
And if Seán Hynes is in Mweenish
Have it made by his hand.
Let my cap and my ribbon be inside in it,
and be placed stylishly on my head,
And Big Paudeen will take me to Mweenish
Or the day will go wrong.
V
As I’m going west past Sandy Isle,
let the flag be on the mast.
Oh, do not bury me in Leitir Calaidh,
for it’s not where my people are,
But bring me west to Mweenish
to the place where I will be mourned aloud;
There’ll be light on the sandhills,
and I will not be lonely there.
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
I
Vorrei essere a tre leghe oltre il mare
o sulle montagne lontano da casa
senz’anima viva accanto a me
ma solo la felce verde e l’erica,
la neve che cade su di me
e il vento la porta via
e mentre parlerò con il mio Taimín Bán (1)
non mi sembrerà lunga la notte
II
Cara Vergine Maria cosa farò,
quest’inverno si sta volgendo al freddo, cara Vergine Maria che cosa farà questa casa
e tutti quelli che ci abitano dentro?
Non eri giovane, mia cara,
quando sei andata via nella bella stagione
quando il cuculo cantava
e ogni foglia verde stava spuntando?
III
Se avessi i miei figli a casa con me
la notte in cui morirò,
mi veglieranno secondo la tradizione
per tre notti e tre giorni;
ci saranno belle pipe
e fusti ben pieni (2),
e ci saranno tre donne di montagna (3)
a piangermi quando sarò pronta (4).
IV
Costruisci la mia bara
con le tavole migliori e le più belle;
e se Seán Hynes (5) è a Mweenish (6)
sarà fatta con le sue mani
che il mio berretto con il nastro ci siano dentro sistemato bene sulla mia testa (7),
e che Paudeen il grosso mi porti a Mweenish
o il giorno andrà storto
V
E mentre andrò a Ovest oltre Sandy Isle (8),
che la bandiera sia sull’albero(9).
Oh, non seppellirmi a Leitir Calaidh (10), perché non è dove ci sono i miei,
ma portami ad ovest a Mweenish
nel luogo in cui sarò compianta a voce alta;
le luci saranno sulle dune
e non sarò sola lì.

NOTE
* per la traduzione in inglese ho fatto rifrimento a tre fonti vedi nei link
1) Taimín Bán Ó Conghaile, il bel Tamin
2) la veglia irlandese si svolge con cibo , bevute (particolarmente gradito il poteen e l’irish whiskey), fumatine con la pipa, musica e canti, danze e giochi
3)  Venivano pagate delle prefiche professioniste per il lamento funebre (in irlandese “keenning“)
4) Il cadavere doveva soprattutto essere vegliato: in Irlanda era sistemato su di una tavola in bella vista (nel soggiorno o comunque nella stanza migliore della casa) facendo in modo che un gruppo di visitatori fosse sempre pronto a circondare il cadavere per impedire agli spiriti maligni di avvicinarsi al corpo e prendere l’anima (lasciando però un passaggio libero nella direzione della finestra o della porta precedentemente lasciata aperta).
5) Mweenish era rinomata per l’abilità dei suoi costruttori delle tradizionali barche da pesca dette Galway Hookers, dallo scafo nero e le vele rosse
6) Maínis o Mweenish è un’isoletta vicino a Carna, Co Galway
7) Al momento di andare al cimitero (o alla chiesa per il rito religioso) il cadavere era messo nella cassa da morto con gli oggetti che il defunto aveva con sé al momento della morte o con gli oggetti che aveva più cari per evitare che il suo spirito tornasse per cercarli
8)  Inse Gaine, o Sand Island
9)  la bandiera sull’albero della nave usata per l’ultimo viaggio
10) Leitir Calaidh è la parte ovest dell’isola di Lettermore detta Lettercallow. Leitir Móir (Lettermore) è un isoletta a sud-est di Carna, divisa in due dall’orografia con un villaggio sulla collinetta a Ovest  –Leitir Calaidh ( Wet Hill of the Harbour) Lettercallow (Leitir Calaidh ossia la zona paludosa) – e il villaggio a oriente –Leitir Móir– che da il nome all’isola (ossia la zona rocciosa). E’ collegata con una carreggiata rialzata alla terra ferma (Annaghvaan Bridge), una strada (la R374) che serpeggiando prosegue fino a Lettermullan unendo così una sorta di piccolo arcipelago di isolette.

 

LOOK AT THE COFFIN: AN IRISH WAKE

https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/aignish-on-the-machair/

LINK
https://archive.org/details/blasmealasipfrom00orou
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/amhr%C3%A1n-mhu%C3%ADnse-song-muighinis.html
http://blaise.ca/blog/2013/06/29/amhran-mhuinse/
http://songsinirish.com/amhran-mhainse-lyrics/

Mise Éire – I am Ireland

Leggi in italiano
Patrick Henry Pearse (Pádraic Mac Piarais or Pádraig Pearse) wrote a short poem in Gaelic, about afflicted Ireland, it was 1912 and the Easter Uprising was to came. It’ll be Pearse who read the proclamation of the Irish Republic on the steps of the Post Office occupied by the rebels. His death along with that of his companions on that Easter of Blood of 1916 will be the prelude to the Irish War of Independence (1919-1921)

In 1959 George Morrison made a documentary film about the foundation of the Republic of Ireland that, recalling it to the Pearse poem, he entitled “Mise Éire”: it was a long work of research and cataloging from the newsreels, period films, photos of key figures such as Pádraig Pearse, James Connolly, Éamon de Valera and Michael Collins, to giving back through the reassembly of archival material, a crucial historical period for Irish independence from 1896 to 1918, a twenty-year period that saw the flowering of both political nationalism and Irish culture, the Gaelic League and the Gaelic Athletics Association, the Abbey Theater of WB Yeats and Lady Gregory which ends with the electoral victory of the Sinn Féin party.
The orchestral soundtrack (for the first time combined with an Irish feature film) was entrusted to Seán Ó Riada, who arranged the traditional Irish music and the sean-nós songs (‘old style’) with a classical style.
The Ó Riada soundtrack certainly contributed to the documentary’s pathos, and among the many traditional melodies he also rearranged “Róisín Dubh” renamed as title track “Mise Éire” .
Róisín Dubh (= little black rose) is Rosalinda, a young girl named Little Rose is the allegory of Ireland, a codeword coined at the end of the sixteenth / early seventeenth century to identify Ireland with a Black Rose, ideally contrasted to the Red Rose of the Tudor House (the Lancaster rose).
The Irish Radio Orchestra

But Pearse poem had remained in the background despite hitting target with the title, it will be Patrick Cassidy on the occasion of the centenary of the Easter Uprising, to write his tune for “Mise Éire”, staged for RTÉ ONE with RTÉ Concert Orchestra and sung by the young Irish singer, Sibéal Ní Chasaide

Sibéal Ní Chasaide live ( in “1916 The Irish Rebellion”, 2016)

I am Ireland (1):
I am older than
the old woman (2) of Beare.
Great my glory:
I that bore
Cuchulainn, the valiant.
Great my shame:
My own children
who sold their mother.
Great my pain:
My irreconcilable enemy
who harrasses me continually.
Great my sorrow
That crowd,
in whom I placed my trust,
died.
I am Ireland:
I am lonelier than
the old woman of Beare.
Mise Éire:
Sine mé ná
an Chailleach Bhéarra
Mór mo ghlóir:
Mé a rug
Cú Chulainn cróga.
Mór mo náir:
Mo chlann féin
a dhíol a máthair.
Mór mo phian:
Bithnaimhde
do mo shíorchiapadh.
Mór mo bhrón:
D’éag an dream
inar chuireas
dóchas.
Mise Éire:
Uaigní mé ná
an Chailleach Bhéarra.

NOTE
1) “Just Speak Your Language”
2) Cailleach Bheara cailleach= “veiled one” she is an ancient goddess also revered in Scotland and the Isle of Man. She is associated with Winter, and the creation of the landscape – in particular the cliffs – and with the stone burial mounds. In the aisling song, Ireland is represented as a girl with the appearance of a goddess, but already in the eighteenth-century song Caitilín Ní Uallacháin Ireland is compared to a “poor old woman” (Sean-Bhean bhocht) Ms. Katty Hualloghan – Cathleen or Kathleen Nì Houlihan-, owner of four green fields (ie the four provinces where Ireland is traditionally divided).

 

https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/roisin-dubh/

https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/caitilin-ni-uallachain/

FONTI
https://www.theballadeers.com/ire/oriad_m2006_mise.htm
https://aliisaacstoryteller.com/2017/06/12/who-was-the-old-woman-of-beare/
http://ifi.ie/film/mise-eire/
http://www.itastreaming.online/film/19383-mise-%C3%89ire-1959-streaming-subita.html
http://www.irishpage.com/poems/miseeire.htm
https://quinteparallele.net/2017/03/20/ceol-na-heireann-musiche-classiche-dirlanda-in-sean-o-riada/

Mise Éire – I am Ireland

Read the post in English  

Patrick Henry Pearse (Pádraic Mac Piarais o Pádraig Pearse) scrisse una breve poesia in gaelico irlandese sull’Irlanda afflitta, era il 1912 e la Rivolta di Pasqua era nell’aria. Sarà Pearse a leggere il proclama della Repubblica Irlandese sui gradini dell’Ufficio postale occupato dai ribelli. La sua morte insieme a quella dei suoi compagni in quella Pasqua di Sangue del 1916 darà il via alla guerra d’Indipendenza irlandese (1919-1921)

Nel 1959 George Morrison realizzò un film-documentario sulla fondazione della Repubblica d’Irlanda e, richiamandosi alla poesia di Pearse, lo intitolò  “Mise Éire”: il suo fu un lungo lavoro di ricerca e catalogazione dai cinegiornali, filmati d’epoca, foto di personaggi chiave come Pádraig Pearse, James Connolly, Éamon de Valera e Michael Collins, volto a restituire attraverso il rimontaggio del materiale d’archivio, un periodo storico cruciale per l’indipendenza irlandese che va dal 1896 al 1918, un ventennio che vide la fioritura del nazionalismo irlandese sia politico che culturale, la  Gaelic League e la Gaelic Athletics Association, l’Abbey Theatre di WB Yeats e Lady Gregory e si conclude con la vittoria elettorale del partito Sinn Féin.

LA COLONNA SONORA

La colonna sonora orchestale (per la prima volta abbinata a un lungometraggio irlandese) fu affidata a Seán Ó Riada il quale arrangiò con piglio classicheggiante la musica tradizionale irlandese e i canti sean-nós (‘stile antico’).
Sicuramente a dare pathos al documentario ha contribuito molto la colonna sonora di Ó Riada che  tra le tante melodie tradizionali rielaborò anche “Róisín Dubh” ribattezzata con il titolo di “Mise Éire” come title track.
Róisín Dubh (= little black rose) è  Rosalinda, una fanciulla dal nome di Piccola Rosa, l’allegoria dell’Irlanda, una parola in codice coniata alla fine del Cinquecento/inizi Seicento per identificare l’Irlanda con una Rosa Nera,  contrapposta idealmente alla Rosa Rossa della Casata Tudor (la rosa dei Lancaster).
The Irish Radio Orchestra

Ma la poesia di Pearse era rimasta sullo sfondo pur avendo fatto centro con il titolo, sarà  Patrick Cassidy (oramai acclamato compositore di colonne sonore per film di grande successo) in occasione del centenario della Rivolta di Pasqua a scrivere appositamente la musica per la poesia Mise Éire,  messa in scena per  RTÉ ONE con RTÉ Concert Orchestra  e la voce di Sibéal Ní Chasaide.

Sibéal Ní Chasaide live (anche in “1916 The Irish Rebellion”, 2016)

Mise Éire:
Sine mé ná an Chailleach Bhéarra
Mór mo ghlóir:
Mé a rug Cú Chulainn cróga.
Mór mo náir:
Mo chlann féin a dhíol a máthair.
Mór mo phian:
Bithnaimhde do mo shíorchiapadh.
Mór mo bhrón:
D’éag an dream inar chuireas dóchas.
Mise Éire:
Uaigní mé ná an Chailleach Bhéarra.


I am Ireland:
I am older than
the old woman of Beare.
Great my glory:
I that bore
Cuchulainn, the valiant.
Great my shame:
My own children
who sold their mother.
Great my pain:
My irreconcilable enemy
who harrasses me continually…
Great my sorrow
That crowd,
in whom I placed my trust,
died.
I am Ireland:
I am lonelier
than the old woman of Beare.
Traduzione italiana Cattia Salto
Il mio nome è Irlanda (1):
sono più vecchia
della Velata di Beara (2)
Grande la mia gloria:
io che ho partorito
Cuchulainn, il coraggioso.
Grande la mia vergogna:
i miei stessi figli
che hanno venduto la loro madre.
Grande il mio dolore:
il mio inconciliabile nemico
che mi opprime continuamente
Grande la mia tristezza:
quel popolo,
in cui riposi la mia fiducia,
è morto.
Il mio nome è Irlanda:
sono più sola
della Velata di Beara

NOTE
1) l’Irlanda è la sua lingua, “Just Speak Your Language”, quella dei vecchi antenati il gaelico irlandese
2) Cailleach Bheara cailleach= “la velata” è un’antica dea dell’inverno venerata anche in Scozia e nell’Isola di Man. E’ collegata con le pietre e la conformazione rocciosa del paesaggio -in particolare le scogliere- e con i tumuli funerari a pietra.
Nelle aisling song l’Irlanda viene rappresentata come una fanciulla dalle sembianze di dea, ma già nel canto settecentesco Caitilín Ní Uallacháin l’Irlanda è paragonata a una  “povera vecchia” (la Sean-Bhean bhocht) la signora Katty Hualloghan – Cathleen o Kathleen Nì Houlihan-,  padrona di quattro campi verdi (cioè le quattro province in cui è divisa per tradizione l’Irlanda).  Il nome è anche il titolo di una opera teatrale di W.B. Yeats e Lady Augusta Gregory ambientata nel 1798.

 

RÓISÍN DUBH

CAITILIN NI UALLACHAIN

FONTI
https://www.theballadeers.com/ire/oriad_m2006_mise.htm
http://www.ilcerchiodellaluna.it/central_Dee_Cailleach.htm
https://aliisaacstoryteller.com/2017/06/12/who-was-the-old-woman-of-beare/
http://www.lasoffittadellestreghe.it/shoponline/cailleach-dea-dellinverno/
http://ifi.ie/film/mise-eire/
http://www.itastreaming.online/film/19383-mise-%C3%89ire-1959-streaming-subita.html
http://www.irishpage.com/poems/miseeire.htm
https://quinteparallele.net/2017/03/20/ceol-na-heireann-musiche-classiche-dirlanda-in-sean-o-riada/

Fair Annie and Gregory

La ballata tradizionale conosciuta comunemente con il titolo di Lord Gregory appartiene ad una family songs cioè un gruppo di canzoni dalla matrice comune in cui il tema si svolge sfaccettandosi in varie angolature.
Nella tragica ballata si narra di un amore abbandonato con tre protagonisti e alcuni risvolti magici: lei (Anna, a volte figlia di re), lui (Lord Gregory) e la madre di lui, con Anna o la madre di Lord Gregory nel ruolo di una fata-strega incantatrice.  La ballata riprende un racconto popolare di origine medievale detto “accused queen” (vedi parte introduttiva)

VERSIONE SCOZZESE: THE LASS OF ROCH ROYAL

Il gruppo principale riporta il titolo “The Lass of Roch Royal” ma anche i titoli alternativi “Lord Gregory”, “Fair Annie and Gregory”, “Love Gregor”, “Anne Gregory”.
La versione più antica (Child # 71 versione A, Libro di canzoni manoscritto di Elizabeth Cochrane), ha una storia preliminare in cui Isabella di Rochroyal in sogno vede il luogo dove si trova Lord Gregory, al mattino fa sellare il suo cavallo e galoppa fino al castello del suo amante. Durante il tragitto incontra una comitiva con la quale scambia una conversazione apparentemente enigmatica
VI
‘O whether is this the first young may,
That lighted and gaed in;
Or is this the second young may,
That neer the sun shined on?
Or is this Fair Isabell of Roch Royall,
Banisht from kyth and kin.’
VII
‘O I am not the first young may,
That lighted and gaed in;
Nor neither am I the second young may,
That neer the sun shone on;
VIII
‘But I’m Fair Isabell of Roch Royall
Banisht from kyth and kin;
I’m seeking my true-love Gregory,
And I woud I had him in.’

Secondo David C. Fowler nel suo “An Accused Queen in “The Lass of Roch Royal”” in The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 71, No. 282 (Oct. – Dec., 1958)
“Are you the young maid,” they ask, “that visits Gregory openly during the day? Or are you the one that slips in to see him at night? Or are you the one [i.e., Isabell of Rochroyall] that he got into trouble?” Understanding the questions in this way, it is immediately apparent 1) that Gregory is (at least allegedly) a ladies’ man, 2) that the three maids represent steps up (or down) the ladder to his affections, and 3) that Isabell’s plight is well known. But what motivates the company to ask such questions? On the assumption that they recognize her as Isabell, which seems likely in context, the most that can be said is that they do not appear to be favorably disposed toward the girl.

Sempre nella Versione A della storia la madre vuole allontanare la fanciulla con l’inganno
“Love Gregory, he is not at home
But he is to the sea;
If you have any word to him,
I pray you leave ‘t with me.”

Appena viene a sapere dalla ragazza che è incinta afferma di volere prendersene cura solo se lei non rivelerà a nessun il nome del padre fino al ritorno di Lord Gregory, ma la fanciulla risponde
“I’ll set my foot on the ship-board,
God send me wind and more!
For there’s never a woman shall bear a son
Shall make my heart so sore.”

La versione in ‘The Bonny Lass of Lochroyan, or Lochroyen,’ Manuscripts e Scottish Songs di Herd 1776 (Child # 71 versione B) è abbastanza simile alla Versione D (Jamieson-Brown Manuscript, fol. 27; Jamieson’s Popular Ballads, I, 36), quella più diffusa ovvero la versione standard.

Nella versione più estesa della ballata veniamo a sapere già dalle prime strofe che a rispondere alle richieste di Anna è la madre (chiamata false mother). Eppure Anna risponde come se avesse parlato Lord Gregory e quindi è presumibile che la madre abbia impersonato Lord Gregory (un’imitazione? Un incantesimo?)

Gericault-shipwreck

ASCOLTA Ewan MacColl in The English and Scottish Popular Ballads Vol. 2 Child Ballads

La versione originale (vedi) è di 32 strofe ridotte da Ewan a 18 (vedi).


I
“Oh wha will lace my shoes sae sma’(1)
And wha will glove my hand?
And wha will lace my middle sae jimp
Wi’ my new-made linen band?
II
“Wha will kaim my yellow hair
Wi’ my new siller kaim
And wha will faither my young son
Till Lord Gregory come hame?
III
“But I will get a bonnie boat
And I will sail the sea
For I maun gang to Lord Gregory
Since he canna come hame to me
IV
“Oh row ye boat, my mariners
And bring me to dry land
For yonder I see my love’s castel
Close by the saut sea strand
V
“Oh open the door, Lord Gregory
Open and let me in
For the wind blows through my yellow hair
And I am shivering to the chin”
VI
“Awa’, awa’ ye wile woman
Some ill death may ye dee
Ye’re but a witch or a wild warlock
Or mermaid o’ the sea”
VII
“I’m neither a witch nor a wild warlock
Nor mermaid o’ the sea
But I’m fair Annie o’ Roch Royal
then, open the door to me
VIII
“Oh dinna ye mind, Lord Gregory(2)
When ye sat at the wine
We changed the rings frae our fingers
And I can show thee thine
IX
“Oh, dinna ye mind, Lord Gregory
When in my faither’s ha’
‘Twas there ye got your will o’ me
And that was worst o’ a’(3)”
X
“Awa’, awa’, ye wile woman
For here ye sanna win in
Gae droon ye in the saut sea
Or hang on the gallow’s pin”
XI
When the cock did craw and the day did daw’
And the sun began to peep
Then up did rise Lord Gregory
And sair, sair did he weep
XII
“I dreamt a dream, my mither dear
The thocht o’t gars me greet
I dreamed fair Annie o’ Roch Royal
Lay cauld deid at my feet”
XIII
“Gin it be Annie o’ Roch Royal(4)
That gars ye mak’ this din
She stood a’ nicht at our ha’ door
But I didna let her in”
XIV
“Oh wae betide ye, ill woman
Some ill death may ye dee
That ye wadna be letten poor Annie in
Or else hae waukened me”
XV
He’s gane doon tae yon sea shore
As fast as he could fare
he saw fair Annie in her boat
And the wind it tossed her sair
XVI
The wind blew loud and the sea grew rough
And the boat was dashed on shore
Fair Annie floated upon the sea
But her young son rose no more
XVII
Lord Gregory tore his yellow hair
And made his heavy moan
Fair Annie lay deid at his feet
But his bonnie young son was gane
XVIII
“Oh wae betide ye, cruel mither
and ill death may ye dee
That ye couldna hae letten fair Annie in
When she came sae far tae me”
traduzione italiano Cattia Salto
I
“Oh chi allaccerà le mie scarpine (1)
e chi mi metterà i guanti?
Chi mi allaccerà bene il busto
con nuove fasce di lino?
II
Chi mi pettinerà i biondi capelli
con il mio nuovo pettine d’argento
e chi sarà il padre di mio figlio
finchè Lord Gregory ritornerà a casa?”
III
“Ma io preparerò una bella barca
e salperò per il mare
per andare da Lord Gregory
poichè  lui non può venire da me”
IV
“Oh vogate, miei marinai
e portatemi sulla terra ferma
che laggiù vedo il castello del mio amore, avvicinatevi alla battigia”
V
“Oh apri la porta, Lord Gregory
apri e fammi entrare
che il vento soffia tra i miei
biondi capelli
e io sbatto i denti”
VI
“Via, via o donna incantatrice
che puoi fare ammalare fino alla morte,
sei una strega del mare o una maga oscura, o una sirena del mare”
VII
“Non sono una strega del mare o una maga oscura, nè una sirena del mare,
io sono la bella Annie di Roch Royal
così aprimi la porta”
VIII
“Ti ricordi, Lord Gregory (2)
quando eri seduto a bere vino
ci siamo scambiati gli anelli
alle dita e posso mostrarti il tuo”
IX
“Ti ricordi, Lord Gregory
quando nella sala di mio padre
hai fatto ciò che hai voluto di me e quella fu la cosa peggiore tra tutte (3)”
X
“Via vattene donna incantatrice
che tu non vincerai qui,
vai ad annegarti nel mare
o ad appenderti sulla forca”
XI
Quando il gallo cantò
spuntò l’alba
e il sole fece capolino
allora si alzò Lord Gregory
e triste si mise a piangere
XII
“Ho fatto un sogno, cara madre,
e al solo pensiero piango
ho sognato la bella Annie di Roch Royal
che giaceva morta ai miei piedi”
XIII
“Se è Annie di Roch Royal (4)
che ti ha dato questo dolore
è stata tutta la notte fuori dalla porta
ma io non l’ho fatta entrare”
XIV
“Oh guai a te, donna pazza
che tu possa ammalarti fino alla morte
che non hai lasciato entrare la povera Annie e nemmeno mi hai svegliato”
XV
Egli andò fino alla riva del mare
più velocemente che potè
e vide la bella Annie sulla sua barca
e il vento che scuoteva le sue vele
XVI
Il vento soffiava forte e il mare s’ingrossò
e la barca naufragò sulla riva
la bella Annie galleggiava sul mare
ma il suo bambino non riemerse più.
XVII
Lord Gregory si strappava i biondi capelli e gridava il suo triste lamento
la bella Annie era morta ai suoi piedi e il suo bel bambino era scomparso.
XVIII
“Oh guai a te, madre crudele
che ti possa ammalare fino alla morte
perchè non hai lasciato entrare la bella Annie
quando è venuta da me”

NOTE
1) Anna si chiede “Chi si prenderà cura di me?” ma il montaggio di questa parte è alterato rispetto alle prime versioni della ballata (e in particolare in The lass of Ocram), in cui la fanciulla prima si reca al castello, poi chiede di entrare e alla richiesta di dimostrare la sua identità cita i tre pegni scambiati con Lord Gregory. Quando la madre viene a sapere che la ragazza è incinta (o che ha partorito un bambino) la scaccia in malo modo. Allora Anna chiede chi si prenderà cura di lei e del bambino e ottiene come risposta che saranno i suoi parenti ad occuparsi di lei mentre per il figlio:
And let God be father of your child,
For Lord Gregory is none
2) in questa versione siamo portati a credere che sia Lord Gregory a rispondere ad Anne e invece apprendiamo che è stata la madre solo nella XI strofa
3) la frase può essere più compiutamente compresa alla luce di quanto riportato nella The Lass of Ocram” (vedi) in cui la fanciulla ricorda a Lord Gregory dei tre “pegni” (three tokens) che si sono scambiati: il primo una camicia di preziosa tela Olandese contro quella di tela scozzese donata da lui; il secondo gli anelli quello di lei di oro fino, quello di lui di stagno; il terzo la verginità
One night in my fathers hall,
Where you stole my maidenhead,
Which was the worst of all.
Si tratta simbolicamente di una contrapposizione tra vero e falso amore
4) nella versione la madre risponde al figlio per giustificare il suo comportamento
XXIII
‘O there was a woman stood at the door,
Wi a bairn intill her arms,
But I woud na lat her within the bowr,
For fear she had done you harm.’

Dalle registrazioni sul campo: ASCOLTA

VERSIONE IRLANDESE: LORD GREGORY

In questa versione della ballata, diffusa anche in diverse versioni testuali da Maddy Prior, Anna diventa la figlia del re di Cappoquin o Capelkin (Irlanda sud contea di Waterford). All’ingresso del castello, le viene detto che Lord Gregory non c’è, perchè è andato in Scozia a portare a casa la sua nuova sposa.
ASCOLTA Fiona Kelleher (strofe I, II, VI e ripete I) intensa e sussurrata l’interpretazione di Fiona intrecciata con ossessive note di pianoforte e le cupe ombre del  contrabbasso suonato con l’archetto


I
I am a King’s daughter come
straight from Cappoquin(1),
In search of Lord Gregory,
pray God I’ll find him.
The rain beats at my yellow locks,
the dew wets me still,
The babe is cold in my arms, love,
Lord Gregory let me in.
II
Lord Gregory is not here
and he henceforth can’t be seen,
For he’s gone to bonny Scotland
to bring home his new queen.
Leave now these windows
and likewise this hall,
For it’s deep in the sea
you will find your downfall.
III
“Who’ll shoe my babe’s little feet?
Who’ll put gloves on her hand?
Who will tie my babe’s middle
With a long linen band?
Who’ll comb my babe’s yellow hair
With an ivory comb?
Who will be my babe’s father
Till Lord Gregory comes home?
IV
Do you remember, love Gregory,
That night in Callander
Where we changed pocket handkerchiefs,
And me against my will?
For yours was pure linen, love,
And mine but coarse cloth;
For yours cost a guinea, love,
And mine but one groat(2).
V
Do you remember, love Gregory,
That night in Callander
Where we changed rings on our fingers,
And me against my will?
For yours was pure silver, love,
And mine was but tin;
For yours cost a guinea, love,
And mine but one cent.”
VI
Do you remember, love Gregory,
that night in Cappoquin?
You stole away my maidenhead
and sore against my will.
And I’ll leave now these windows
and likewise this hall,
For it’s deep in the sea
I will find my downfall.
VII
“And my curse on you, Mother,
My curse being sore!
Sure, I dreamed the girl I love
came a-knocking at my door.”
“Sleep down you foolish son,
Sleep down and sleep on:
For it’s long ago that weary girl
Lies drownin’ in the sea.”
VIII
“Well go saddle me the black horse,
The brown, and the gray;
Go saddle me the best horse
In my stable to-day!
And I’ll range over mountains,
Over valleys so wide,
Till I find the girl I love
And I’ll lay by her side.”
traduzione italiano Cattia Salto
I
Sono la figlia del re arrivata direttamente da Cappoquin (1)
a cercare Lord Gregory
e per Dio lo troverò.
La pioggia cade sui miei riccioli biondi
e anche la rugiada mi bagna,
il bambino ha freddo tra le mie braccia,
Lord Gregory, fammi entrare.
II
Lord Gregory non è qui
e non può ricevere visite,
perchè è andato nella bella Scozia
per portare a casa la sua nuova sposa.
Allontanati adesso dalle finestre
e anche da questo castello
perchè nel fondo del mare
troverai la tua rovina.
III
“Chi allaccerà le scarpe alla mia bimba?
Chi le metterà i guanti?
Chi fascerà bene il busto della bimba
con lunghe fasce di lino?
Chi pettinerà i biondi capelli della bimba con un pettine d’avorio?
Chi sarà il padre di mia figlia
finchè Lord Gregory ritornerà a casa?
IV
Ti ricordi Lord Gregory
quella notte a Callander
quando ci siamo scambiati
i fazzoletti da taschino
contro la mia volontà?
Perchè il tuo era di puro lino, amore
e il mio solo di tela grossolana,
però  il tuo costava una ghinea, amore
e il mio solo pochi penny (2)
V
Ti ricordi, Gregory caro,
quella notte a Callander
quando ci siamo scambiati gli anelli al dito
contro la mia volontà?
Il tuo era di argento puro, caro
e il mio solo di latta,
il tuo costava una ghinea
e il mio solo un centesimo.
VI
Ti ricordi, Gregory caro,
quella notte a Cappoquin?
Hai preso la mia verginità
e contro la mia volontà
e mi allontanerò adesso dalle finestre
come pure da questo castello
perchè nel fondo del mare
troverò la mia rovina.”
VII
“Ti maledico, madre,
ti maledico con dolore!
Ho sognato la donna che amo
che veniva a bussare alla mia porta.”
“Dormi figlio, sogni pazzie,
rimettiti a dormire
è da un pezzo che quella ragazza sventurata è annegata in fondo al mare”
VII
“sellatemi il cavallo nero
quello baio e il grigio
sellatemi il cavallo migliore
che c’è oggi nella stalla
e io cercherò per i monti
e le ampie vallate
finchè troverò la donna che amo
e mi stenderò al suo fianco”

NOTE
1) anche Callander
2) goat= moneta inglese d’argento dal valore di quattro penny.
FONTI
https://mainlynorfolk.info/shirley.collins/songs/lordgregory.html