Tales of the Elders of Ireland (Acallam na Senórach)

By Ann Dooley; Harry Roe | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XII

SAINT Patrick at that time went to the Grave of the Druid,* now called the Grave of Geidech, since Geidech, the bishop of the household of Patrick had been there, or else it was Geidech, the druid of Medb and Ailill, who fell there. The King of Connaught, Áed, the son of Muiredach, son of Finnachta, went at that time to the Fort of the Sheep of Medb, now called the Mairtine of the son of Connra.

That evening an attack of serious illness came upon Bé Binn, the daughter of Eochaid Lethderg, the King of Leinster, and the wife of the King of Connaught. She died there, and was buried in the Height of the Angels, now called the Spring of Garad,* for thousands of angels came there three times to converse with Patrick as he recited his hours. For this reason is it called the Height of the Angels.

The King of Connaught came to the Grave of the Druid where Saint Patrick was staying and they made a gathering and an assembly of the province of Connaught, which extends from the Flagstone of the Cataract of Lomanach, now called Limerick, to Assaroe.*

Caílte, meanwhile, went off with his people from the Enclosure of the Women to the place where Patrick and the nobles of Connaught were and put his head into Patrick's lap. The nobles of Connaught welcomed Caílte and Cas Corach, son of Caincinde. 'By our word,' they said, 'since you left us we have not seen a company more beloved by us than you.' 'By my word,' said Caílte, 'since the Lord Finn went away I have not seen a company more beloved by me than you.' Cas Corach, son of Caincinde, went over to Patrick, put his head into Patrick's lap, and did homage to him. 'The virtue of eloquence on you, dear boy,' said Patrick, 'every third word that a man of your art will say will be sweet to all who hear it, and they will be men of the king's bed, and candles of each assembly for ever because of your art.' The arrival of that pair provided Patrick with entertainment of both mind and spirit.

Patrick asked Caílte about all that had happened to him from the time that he left to the time that he returned and Caílte told true tales to him. 'Well now, Broccán,' said Patrick, 'let the tales of Caílte

-215-

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Tales of the Elders of Ireland (Acallam na Senórach)
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Content v
  • Introduction vii
  • Note on the Text and Translation xxxi
  • Guide to the Pronunciation of Irish Names xxxiv
  • Select Bibliography xxxviii
  • A Chronology of Fenian Tales in Ireland and Scotland xli
  • Prologue 3
  • Chapter I 5
  • Chapter II 33
  • Chapter III 47
  • Chapter IV 70
  • Chapter V 83
  • Chapter VI 105
  • Chapter VII 124
  • Chapter VIII 127
  • Chapter IX 151
  • Chapter X 179
  • Chapter XI 192
  • Chapter XII 215
  • Epilogue 220
  • Explanatory Notes 224
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