Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Aislinge Meic Conglinne.

Inniu, bím ag aistrigh míreannaí as alt síos as Gaeilge ó Béarla! "Ag insint scéalaí craois, samhlaíochtha, agus truallíochta go Ollscoil Náisiúnta na hÉirinn ina Gallimh." Ordóidh sé trí mo lheagan beagán, mar sin féin. Foghlaimeoidh tú ciall theanga, b'fhéidir.

Bhí ball súiche, graostacht, easurraim, droch-cheann a caitheamh le duine, fíon, mná, agus amhrán ní raibh cuid de mo ghnó é ar an bard meánaoiseach agus na sceálai go mbíodh ag scríofa agus ag inste. Is Aislinge Meic Conglinne í aon duanaire den chineál seo craois, samhlaíochtha, agus truallíochta.

Chum sárobair bharrúil bordaithe ar 1100. Insíonn sí fúithi go raibh go faighte buaireadh an rí Mhumhain sé féin leis daemón craois, seadán arrachtach, agus conas sé a leigheas ar ghalar sa deireadh leis samhlíochtaí faoi bia mhic léinn bocht.

Is aoir í an obair faoi na aicmí níos ard de ord cléire agus ollúna na h-Éirinn meánaoiseach. Tá sí fúithi diagantachtaí agus móthu phribléid acu. Déanann sí scigaithris ar priomh-modhannaí litríochtaí ar an aimsire. Magann sí a dhéanamh faoi naomhsheanchas, imrim, tairngreachtaí, agus fiú amháin An Bíobla Naofa.

Tá sí anseo. Bhí sí ag aistriú le Kuno Meyer i 1904. Léigh í agus go bhfaighe tú go raibh sí bainfidh sult aisti tusa féin anois. Céard h-ocht céadta?

The Vision of MacConglinne.

Today, I will be translating bits from an article below into Irish from English! "Telling stories of gluttony, imagination, and corruption from the National University of Ireland in Galway." It will change a little through my translation, all the same. You'll learn a sense of the language, perhaps.

Smut, ribaldry, irreverence, acting not well towards another person, wine, women, and song were but a share of one's duties that a medieval bard would have written and told. The Vision of MacConglinne is one verse-anthology of this kind of gluttony, imagination, and profanity.

(The) comic masterpiece was composed approximately 1100. It tells in it about (how) that it was found set upon the king of Munster himself with a demon of gluttony, a monstrous parasite, and how he was cured of an ailment at last with the fantasies concerning food of a poor student.

The work is a satire about the higher ranks of society of the clerical order and the professoriat in medieval Ireland. It is about their godliness and feeling of privilege. It makes a parody of the primary modes of literature at the time. It makes mockery about hagiography, journeys, prophecies, and even of the Holy Bible.

It's here. It was translated by Kuno Meyer in 1904. Read it and you may find that it may bring pleasure from it for yourself now. What's eight centuries?

"Telling tales of gluttony, fantasy and profanity at NUIG"

Dirty jokes, ribaldry, irreverence, bad behaviour, wine, women, and song were all in a day's work for a mediaeval bard and the stories he would write and tell.

One such collection of gluttony, fantasy, and profanity is the Aislinge Meic Conglinne, a classic of Mediaeval Irish literature, also known as The Vision of MacConglinne. It will be discussed at the International Colloquium on Mediaeval Irish Classic at NUI, Galway, a one-day event on Friday September 12, organised by the university's School of Humanities.

This comic masterpiece, composed around 1100, tells how the king of Munster came to be afflicted by a demon of gluttony, a monstrous parasite, and how a poor student's fantasies of food eventually cured him.

The work is a satire on the clerical and learned orders of Mediaeval Ireland, on their pieties and sense of privilege. It also parodies the major literary forms of the time, making play of saints' lives, voyage-tales, prophecies and even the Bible.

"Modern readers may be surprised by the degree of profanity and blasphemy in it, while students are likely to delight in its irreverence," says Máirín Ní Dhonnchadha, Ollamh le Sean- agus Meán-Ghaeilge at NUIG and organiser of the colloquium.

Aislinge Meic Conglinne also cast an influence over later Irish literature. There are versions by Yeats, Austin Clarke, Pádraic Fallon, and Peter O'Shaughnessy, while the Irish-language version is by Fr Peadar Ó Laoghaire.

The colloquium will be held in the Seminar Room of NUIG's Moore Institute for Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences, starting at 9.45am with an opening address by Prof Steven Ellis, Head of the School of Humanities.

The line-up of speakers includes Celtic scholars from Ireland, Scotland, Germany, Norway, Italy, the Netherlands, and North America. The main focus will be on the Mediaeval original, but the final paper, by Professor Melita Cataldi of Turin (at 4pm), will focus on the modern retellings.

For more information contact 091 - 520248 or see http://www.nuigalway.ie


Grianghraf/Photo: Somehow this image of Irish designer Jonathan Anderson conjured itself up from a biologist-artist's intriguing blog Jessica Palmer's "Bioephemera," when I entered "medieval Irish visions," as all three search words somehow floated onto her page. It fits by dreamlogical happenstance. What a shivering celibate (?) cleric might dream of, I warrant. Or even myself.

1 comment:

Bo said...

Love it - the horse made of dairy products and bacon etc is marvellous. I hope i get the change to teach it. Kenneth Jackson's edition has a wonderful linguistic introduction which is great for getting to grips with Middle Irish, which in some ways is harder than Old and Modern Irish because it's so chaotic. Thanks for this anyway!