Dinnshenchas of Cenn Finichairverse beg. Inmain in fáid Finichair
- Middle Irish
- verse, prose
- Early Irish poetry, Dinnshenchas Érenn, Finn Cycle, dinnshenchas
- Inmain in fáid Finichair
Fionn mac Cumhaill, Find úa Báiscni
(time-frame ass. with Finn Cycle, Finn mac Cumaill, Cormac mac Airt)
Finn mac Cumaill (earlier mac Umaill?), Find úa Báiscni: central hero in medieval Irish and Scottish literature of the so-called Finn Cycle; warrior-hunter and leader of a fían
- Dinnshenchas Érenn A (prose text and poem):
- Dublin, Trinity College, MS 1339 (H 2. 18) = Book of Leinster [s. xii2]p. 191bbeginning: ‘Inmain in fáid Finichair’Poem.
- Dublin, Trinity College, MS 1339 (H 2. 18) = Book of Leinster [s. xii2]p. 200bbeginning: ‘Cend Finichair, unde nominatur?’Prose text.
- Middle Irish
- Secondary language(s): Latin
- casbairdne (7³+7³+7³+7³)
Prose text (LL p. 200)Summary:
Prose dinnshenchas of Cenn Finichair, which the title heading locates i samud Caemgin ‘in the community of Cóemgen’ (i.e. Glendalough).
Finichair mac Gollain, for whom the mountain is said to be named, is described as follows:
- He is a judge (brithem), (seer-)physician (fáith-liaig) and fosterson to Finn mac Cumaill.
- Gollan, son of Gainmedach, is his father; Murenn mór-ainec, daughter of Eochaid Find Fúath nAirt, is his mother.
- His wife is Tuirenn Tamnaige (‘of Tamnach’).
- He is 50 feet tall and associated with the number 50 in other ways (50 years of age, 50 pupils, 50 women, etc.).
The story runs as follows:
- Finichair has an affair with the wife (anonymous) of Cathnia(d) Congnaid. When Cathnia has caught them in the act, ‘they’, presumably Finichair and Cathnia (or the adulterous lovers?), slay one another.
- Cathnia places Finichair’s head (cenn Finichair) on the mountain, whence Cenn Finichair is named for him.
- Finichair's mother Murenn and his wife Tuirenn die of grief.
The poem, though preserved elsewhere in LL, is announced, with an ascription to Finn.
Poem (LL p. 191b)Summary:
Poem attributed to Finn in which he laments the death of Finichair. The etymological connection between the mountain and the eponymous character is absent here, but the poem alludes to much the same story:
- Finichair's affair with Cathnia's ‘yellow-haired wife’ (mnai mongbuide) is mentioned in stanza 4. Cf. stanza 12.
- Both men suffer ruin (stanza 5): Cathnia slays Finichair (stanza 4), who appears to return him the favour (stanza 9).
- Although no mountain is explicitly mentioned, Finichair's grave is described as being ‘fifty feet of earth’ (stanza 3).
What the poem lacks in narrative detail, it compensates in personal descriptions:
- Finichair is described as a prophet (fáid), seer-judge (fáith-brithem), seer-physician (fáith-liaig), a poet, ‘bard of Almu’ (bard Almaine) and a warrior in his own right.
- Finichair has his residence (comnaide) in Cabra(d), near Dublin (Gwynn).
- His ancestry is again emphasized: he is a son of Gollan mac Gainmedaig and Murenn Mornach (of the Clann Morna? cf. the epitet mór-ainec in the prose account); and a descendant of Finn Fuath nAirt.
- ... forthcoming
Primary sources Text editions and/or modern translations – in whole or in part – along with publications containing additions and corrections, if known. Diplomatic editions, facsimiles and digital image reproductions of the manuscripts are not always listed here but may be found in entries for the relevant manuscripts. For historical purposes, early editions, transcriptions and translations are not excluded, even if their reliability does not meet modern standards.
Secondary sources (select)
page url: https://codecs.vanhamel.nl/Dinnshenchas_of_Cenn_Finichair
numerical alternative: https://codecs.vanhamel.nl/index.php?curid=12796
page ID: 12796
page ID tracker: https://codecs.vanhamel.nl/index.php?title=Show:ID&id=12796