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Page 21 - A Story from Hughie Dan MacDonnell: Conall Ruadh nan Car

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1978/12/1 (353 reads)

thoirt thro shrub a' choire rud cho gSibh- aidh 's a dh'fheuch mi riamh," thuirt e. "Ach eadar a h-uile sian a bh'ann fhuair mi amach as a* choire. Dh'fhoighneachd mi • n uair sin dhi a robh sian sam bith an sin a chuireadh finish air an fhamhair. • Tha slatan draodhachd ann a* sud,' thuirt ise. • Ma bhuaileas tu • n ceann garbh dheth air an fhamhair ni thu creag shalainn dheth. • Dh'fhalbh e 's chaidh e air • n adhart is fhuair e slatan draodhachd • s bhuail e air an f(h)amhair e 's rinn e creag shalainn air. Agus fhuair e a' bhean • s a* leanabh • bha 'seo thoirt clear agus e fhein cbmhla riuth' . Gu dearbh," thuirt esan, "bha mise ann an Sire na bu mhiosa na tha mi an nochd." "Gu dearbh fhein, bha." Is bha a* bhean (recte: a* mhathair) aig a* righ ag bisdeachd ris an naidheachd. Thanaig i anuas. "An tus* a bhlair an eilean?" thuirt ise. " • S mi," thuirt esan. "Uill, is mise 'm boireannach a bh'ann'ag- us sin agad a* leanabh a bh'agam • a' righ." Ach • & ann mar a bh'ann. Chaidh tionndadh mu chuairt. Ghabhadh mu chuairt air Conall is a h-uile sian a b'fhearr a ghabhadh deanadh a dheanadh dha. • Sa mhadainn air la'r-na-mhaireach chaidh tionndadh mu chu? airt agus saic de dh'br thoirt dhomh fhin (thuirt Conall) agus an t-Each Blar Buidh • agus thanaig mi dhachaidh gu Righ nan Uin? neagan Daraich leis an eallach a bha • 'seo. Agus thug mi • n t-each'dha'n righ agus thug mi fhin leam an cbrr agus rinn sinn dannsa mor, uamhasach a mhair fad latha agus bliadhna. Agus • nuair a theirig an uair sin an dannsa 's an li('uor dh'fhalbh mi 's thionndaidh mi mu chairt. Is dh'fhalbh mi 's thug mi leam Archie Ken? nedy agus bha sinn 'falbh a dh'iarraidh liquor, 's bha sinn a* dol cross air allt is br6gan paipeir oirnn. Agus chaidh sinn air bhog' 'san allt 's dh'fhalbh na brbgan dhinn is dhealaich mise riuth'. And so it was; things were turned around. People came to Conall and the best things that could be done were done for him. On the morning of the following day they turned around and sacks of gold were given to me (to Conall) along with the Yellow Blaze-Faced Steed and I came home (from) the King of the Oaken Windows with that load. And I gave the steed to the king and kept the rest for myself and we had a great big dance which lasted a year and a day. And then when the dance and the liquor ran out I went and I turned around, (said Conall,) and I went and I took Archie Kennedy with me and we were going after more liquor, and we were crossing a brook with paper shoes on. And we got bogged down in the brook and the paper shoes came off us and I parted from them there. This tale was collected, transcribed, and translated by John Shaw of Kmgsville, who adds; This tale was recorded from Hughie Dan MacDonell of Deepdale, Inverness Co., in the house of Archie Kennedy, Dunvegan, in 1964. Hughie Dan, who began learning sgeul- achdan (tales) at the age of 10, recited this and other tales in a lively, prac? tised style. His ancestors came from Kep- poch in Lochaber, Scotland. He died in 1975 • Other versions of the tale recorded in Cape Breton include a splendid one from Lauchie MacLellan, Dunvegan, called "An Gadaiche Dubh" (The Black Thief), and a detailed fragment from Mrs. Jim Smith (Bean Sheumais Alasdair Pheadair), age 94 of W. Lake Ainslie, describing the falling out between Conall • s and the king's eldest sons, and a battle between Conall and a band of diabolical cats. Gaelic versions from Scotland, under the name Conall Cra Bhuidhe appear in Popular Tales of the West Highlands, v. I, and more recently as "An Gadaiche Dubh" (The Byzantine Brigand) from the recitation of Angus MacLellan in Stories from South Uist (ed. John Lome Campbell). It is clear from these other sources that the in-tale (episode within a larger tale) concerning the battle with the cats has been lost from the story given here. This tale type (AT 953). classed by folklorists as a Ro? mantic Tale, was popular throughout West? ern Europe and was recorded as far back as the Middle Ages. The episode with the one- eyed giant and the goats is much older than this, appearing as Odysseus • contest with the Cyclops Polyphemus in Book 9 of Homer • s Odyssey. My thanks to Sr. Margaret MacDonell of St. F.X.U. for her valuable suggestions re? garding transcription and translation. In the English translation I have edited a few inconsistencies in the telling of the in-tales in order to leave them as coher? ent as possible. The Gaelic is given here exactly as recorded. Dan Hughie's humour? ous ending alluding to the host, while a personal one, is a device well-known among Gaelic story-tellers. jyS CAPE BRETON SHOPPING PLAZA STDNBT RIVBR • OIBN DAILT 'TIL 10 P. M. lUY WITH CONRDENCE SATISFAGTiON , mmxm LmFMCoIBii H.ilW MHn Mn'H A DiTision of the F.!f*W6olwocth Co. Linited
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