Folk-Lore/Volume 1/Report on the Campbell MSS. at Edinburgh

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Folk-Lore, Volume 1  (1890) 
Report on the Campbell MSS. at Edinburgh
by Alfred Nutt

THE CAMPBELL OF ISLAY MSS.

AT THE

ADVOCATES’ LIBRARY, EDINBURGH.


I TOOK advantage of an Easter holiday-trip to Edinburgh to devote a few hours to the examination of a portion of the MSS. bequeathed to the Advocates’ Library by the late J. F. Campbell, the collector and editor of the Popular Tales from the West Highlands,[1] and of the Leabhair na Feinne. I reckoned that to work carefully through those MSS. bearing upon folk-lore and upon Celtic antiquities, and, by indexing them, to render their contents accessible to students, would require at least a month’s steady labour. The following notes must thus only be considered as an attempt to draw the attention of folk-lorists to this mine of unworked matter; and no conclusion respecting the richness and value of the collection must be drawn from my silence respecting those portions which I had not time to examine. I may say at once, however, that the hopes I entertained of finding English versions of the many variants and unpublished tales to which Campbell refers in the P. T. were not realised. I came across a considerable deal of unpublished English, but chiefly stories about fairies, local and clan traditions. How many of the unpublished Gaelic tales, of which a list is given at the end of P. T., vol. iv, may be found in the collection I cannot of course say, but I incline to believe very few. It would thus appear that, besides the MSS. in the Advocates’ Library, there must be another batch elsewhere. If this is so, I would appeal to the owner to allow examination at the hands of a competent Gaelic scholar.

The MSS. interesting to the folk-lorist fall into four classes:—

(a.) The Journals, which I was not able to do more than glance at cursorily, but which would repay attentive study.

(b.) A volume lettered “Oral Mythology”.

This MS., completed in 1870, was offered for publication to Messrs. Smith, Elder & Co., and refused by them in a letter dated July 1, 1870. The author looked through it in 1877, and noted that it would be unadvisable to publish it as it stood. In 1881 he again looked through it, and noted that it contained “honest, hard work”. There is no index, only a brief list of contents, which I transcribe as some indication of the nature and scope of the work. The figures in brackets, giving the number of pages allotted to each subject, are Campbell’s:

Tradition and Mythology (5).—Aryan Myth (8).—Current British Myth, Migration of Stories (45).—Eggs, Mythology, Kalewala, Edda (25).—Telegu Selections (3).—Indian Mythology in Ancient Sculptures ( ).—American Mythology ( ).—Serpents ( ).—Languages (44).—Water, etc. (17).—Birds and Air (27).—Stories (18).—Beasts and Earth (54).—Lion, etc. (18).— Philosophy (9);

thus making a total of 273 pages, exclusive of the cancelled numbers. The pages are not numbered, and I had no time to check Campbell’s calculation, but I should roughly estimate the total number of pages at 350, equal to a similar number of fairly closely printed demy octavo pages.

In the last quarter of the volume I noted an unpublished Highland märchen, entitled The Black Horse, of which the following is a very brief abstract:

A king dies, and after a year his property is divided, and the youngest son (hero) gets a “limping white garron”. He sets forth on his travels and meets a mysterious stranger, who proposes to give him for his white garron a black horse having this property: “there is no place you can think of in the four parts of the wheel of the world that he will not take you there.” Hero accepts, and forthwith wishes himself in the realm of Under Waves, by the prince of which he is bespelled to go seek the King of Greece’s daughter. Hero effects this by inducing the Greek princess to get up behind him on the black horse. The princess delays the wedding by calling for different objects which the hero has to fetch. These are: (1) silver cup, (2) black silk hood locked within seven doors, (3) pair of shoes of light, (4) silver ring. To accomplish this last quest the hero, mounted upon his black horse, has to leap from a mountain of snow to one of ice, from thence through one of fire, and the horse must swim through a loch which takes fire and blazes. When this is done the hero has to make a castle, compared to which that of King Under Waves is but “washing water”, and finally to dig a well in the courtyard of the castle. Down this the princess induces the king to look, pushes him in, and weds the hero. After three years the latter minds him of the black horse, beheads him at the horse’s command, whereupon he turns into the Greek princess’s brother.

Campbell justly remarks of this tale that it is imperfect; the magic articles won by the hero should serve him in the fulfilment of the succeeding tasks.

Whilst only able to examine this volume cursorily, I yet agree with the author’s 1877 estimate, that it would not do to publish it as it stands. But it contains a deal of interesting matter, and should be studied by anyone purposing to write a general treatise upon folk-lore. It is much to be regretted that Messrs. Smith, Elder & Co. should not have seen their way to publish it in 1870, as it would have materially hastened the progress of research.

(c.) West Highland Tales, 17 volumes (16 very stout 4to., one thin 4to.).

These volumes contain the original MSS. of Campbell’s collection, the press transcripts of same, the corrected proofs and revises, letters relating to same, newspaper cuttings and other matter, bound together without pagination and without index. As some of these volumes must contain upwards of a thousand different leaves, it will easily be understood what time a thorough overhauling of their contents would require.

I tested the first volume, i-xvi of P. T., in half a dozen places, and I could not find that it contained the full text of the variants which Campbell cites or summarises.

Vols. ii-ix are of the same character, to judge from a very hasty inspection.

Vol. x opens with a cancelled list of fifty-one tales, followed by a new list of 224 tales, with provenance, narrator and brief characterisation of certain stories. These lists differ from the ones at end of P. T. iv. Then comes a very miscellaneous English collection of short tales, proverbs and folk-lore jottings, amongst them the opening of Koisha Kayn (from John Campbell, who had it from a very old man who knew the twenty-four tales making up the cycle). The remainder of the volume is in Gaelic, and may contain the full text of some of the unpublished versions.

Vol. xi, which is of the same character, but with less English, is lettered “Index”, but though I searched carefully I could find none.

Vol. xii contains unpublished Gaelic poems.

Vol. xiii at once attracted my attention. It is lettered “English collection. Published and unpublished, copied out 1860.” A brief description of this volume will show how difficult examination is. The bulk of it is formed by Miss Dempster’s Sutherlandshire collection (since published in these pages, F.-L. J., vol. vi), comprising 120 numbers; but this is interleaved (not interpaged) with two other series, one of which must have consisted of fifty-seven numbers, as there is a MS. list of contents to that effect at the beginning of the volume, but I could only find Nos. 1-18 and Nos. 25-57, whilst of Miss Dempster’s collection, which is in two differently paged series, Nos. 1-79 of one series seem to be missing. The fifty-seven No. list is of much the same character as Miss Dempster’s. At the end of the volume is a miscellaneous assortment of matter, chiefly fairy lore and local tradition, but some tales; amongst them what is apparently the full Gaelic text of a version of the Battle of the Birds, different from the one in P. T. Portions of Campbell’s diary seem to have got bound up in this volume by mistake, instead of with the Journals, and give fascinating glimpses of his method of collecting. The volume closes with a list of 170 English stories, quite different from the one in vol. x.

Vols. xiv-xvi do for the Introduction and Notes what vols. i-ix do for the Tales, i.e., bring together author’s MS., scribe’s transcript, proofs, revise, letters, reviews, etc.

Vol. xvii is lettered O’Cein’s Leg, 1870-71. It contains the fullest version as yet collected in the Highlands, running to 142 pages of MS., taken down by Hector MacLean from Lachlan MacNeill.[2] The Gaelic text is followed by fourteen pages of English abstract. In view of the great interest of this tale, I copied out the pith of this abstract, and give it here, with constant reference to Mr. MacInnes’s version with my notes.[3] The abstract is preceded by a list of the chief characters in the story of O’Cein’s Leg.

In the framework.

1. King of Ireland.
2. Son and Successor.
3, 4.[4] His Foster-Father and his Magic Wife.
5. O’Cein,[5] the wicked treasurer whose leg is broken.

In the stories told.

6.[6] The King of Lochlann, who does nothing and never appears.

6a. His daughter, who does nothing particular, but is carried off and recovered.[7]
7.[8] Macan an Athamain, his son, who tells stories, and cures O’Cein’s legs with them.
8.[9] A Ghil Ghreine (Sunbright), his wife, carried off by
9.[10] Macabh Mór, who is slain by 17.
10.[11] Calpach, eldest son of 7-8, who marries
11.[12] Athan uchd sholais (Breast of Light), who is carried off by
12. Macan na Foraise fiadhaich, who marries nobody, and from whom she is taken by
13.[13] Righ an Domhain, from whom she is recovered by 10, 12, 19, 23, 30, the allies.
14.[14] Gorm Shuil, son of 7-8, who marries
15. Youngest daughter of
16.[15] The Man of the Flapping Grey Cassock.
17.[16] Macan an uaigneas, third son of 7, the mysterious love-child who appears in so many stories. He marries
18. Nighean righ an talamh iseal (the daughter of the King of the Lowlands).


These chief actors have adventures with

19. Macabh mór mac righ Sorachain, married to
20. the daughter of a king.
21. The King of Siginn, who does nothing here.
22. His twenty-four sons married to
23. the twenty-four daughters of 13.
24. The King of the Lowlands (? Netherlands), father of 18, who tells one story to 25. the big black man who wants the story.
26. The big giant of the one eye, brother of 25, and slain by 24.
27. The stepmother \ enchanters belonging to 24.
28. The Harper /
29. Art nan Casan Connallach (a king of whom I have not heard till now), who only appears to be slain.
30.[17] Druapach, who is an ally; a kind of bard and henchman, herald, guide, pilot, and master-of-arms to Calpach.


Abstract of Story.

1. Heroine, as hare, jumps up behind hero; they marry; forthwith the landscape, from a barren waste, becomes fertile land. The King is invited against the wife’s advice. O’Cein, the Treasurer, insults the wife. The country at once changes back to its former condition, and O’Cein’s leg is broken into twenty-four bits.

2. Story of the Captain about an island which cures hurts. O’Cein is put there; after being dragged round it, is left[18] A man comes to heal him,

3. who tells of a church, and how his mother and sister were carried off,

4. of the pursuit after them, how Sunbright was rescued from a rock in the middle of the sea, and how the narrator slew the knight of the red shield.

5. Of the carrying off of Sunbright, and how, after seven years, the narrator pursues with his two sons. They part at three roads, and

6. a third son is born to narrator. For eighteen years the narrator and the two elder sons dwell at the cross-roads. The third son then comes, overcomes his two half-brothers, nearly overcomes his father, is recognised, and all four set off to rescue Sunbright, the youngest son slaying the giant who had carried her off.

7. Adventures of the youngest son; he games against a black man and wins maiden, horse, and dog on three successive days. 8. The maiden is the daughter of the King of the Lowlands. She warns her husband not to continue gaming, but he does so, loses, and is bespelled to get

9. the story of the giant of the one eye and a bone of his bones. By his wife’s advice the hero goes to his father, the King of the Lowlands, and gets the story, which is as follows: The King and his brethren had been changed by their stepmother into wolves, and forced to an island, when narrator eats his brethren from hunger, swims ashore, is hunted by his father’s hounds, rescued, twice accused of devouring stepmother’s children, third time watches and seizes monstrous black hand, tears it out at shoulder, follows up monster’s trail, slays one-eyed giant, and recovers children. Stepmother and witch are burnt,

Hero returns home with this story and a bone of the monster, and, following his wife’s counsel, slays the black man, brother of the one-eyed giant.

10. Adventures of Calpach, the second son.

11. How he carries off Breast of Light,

12. who is carried off by a big man. Calpach follows, overcomes King of Siginn’s son and

13. warrior who had carried off Breast of Light, who

14. in the meantime had been carried off by the Emperor of the Universe. Calpach, Prince of Siginn and warrior set off in pursuit.

15. They challenge the King of the Universe, who gives up Breast of Light to Calpach, and his twenty-four daughters to the twenty-four sons of the King of Siginn.

16. Adventures of Gormshuil, the eldest son, and how he married the daughter of the Man with Flapping Grey Cassock. He picks up a servant, and falls in love with a maiden, who tells him

17. how her brother had been carried off by a sea monster, and might only be rescued by Gormshuil (Blue-eyes). The latter rescues the brother and weds the maiden, but she tells him he would fall in love with a harper’s widow. So it falls out; but, after different adventures, hero and heroine are reunited.

18. Blue-eyes, beaten at stone-throwing by a hag, is sent off by her in quest of the head of Art nan Casan Connallach. By help of his servant, he accomplishes this and returns home.

19. The twenty-four bits of the leg are now replaced, and the King of Lochlann takes O’Cein back to Ireland. Apparently three hundred years had passed, and O’Cein was only recollected as a bad man. He repents, everything changes back, and O’Cein remains Treasurer to the end of his days.

Campbell notes that he can only make nineteen tales in all, whereas there should be twenty-four secondary ones for each broken bit. On comparing this with the two printed versions, the portion common to all three, the opening and the adventures of the King of Lochlann’s son, would seem to be shorter; but the after-part, the adventures of the three sons, is only found in MacNeill’s version. As Campbell points out, the adventures of Calpach are very similar to those of Conall Gulban. I may add that the story told by the King of the Lowlands is almost precisely similar to one of the episodes in “How the Great Tuairsgeul was put to death.”[19]

The English extract is followed by Gaelic versions sent by the Rev. J. G. Campbell of Tiree, one of which he has since published and translated.

The first page of this volume has an interesting vignette photograph of Campbell and Hector MacLean taking down MacNeill’s story. It is one of the best likenesses of Campbell I know.

In addition to these seventeen 4to. volumes bound in brown-red calf, there are four royal 8vo. volumes bound in cloth, which are lettered West Highland Tales. But this is a mistake. The first of these four volumes is half filled by a duplicate series of proofs and revise to the P. T., but the other half, and vols. ii-iv, are taken up by (chiefly Gaelic) local and clan traditions, genealogical memoranda, and the like.

(d.) Leabhar na Feinne. There are three stout 4to. volumes lettered thus and bound in red-brown calf, which contain transcripts from which the text was printed. There are, furthermore, six thin 4to. and oblong folio volumes also lettered thus. Of these, one lettered vol. i contains a working copy of the printed matter, which consists, as is well known, of the Gaelic texts, with brief critical introduction, and brief critical summaries and notes in English. The second volume of the work, which was to contain the general introduction and an English version, never appeared. It was, therefore, with great curiosity that I turned to “Vol. II. MS. Introduction”. This contains a fair scribe’s-copy, but revised, amended, and added to by Campbell himself, of his proposed Introduction to the second volume of the Leabhar na Feinne. His original autograph, from which this transcript was made, is also in the collection lettered L. na F., and marked in left-hand upper corner of cover-verso, A. N. 4.

The transcript originally consisted of 177 numbered pages, increased by some 40 or 50 pages of additions, chiefly towards the end, and evidently after Campbell had been to Ireland and became better acquainted with the Irish evidence. The MS. was then continued to p. 221 (“ended Jan. 15th, 1872; copied March 12th, 1872”), and further increased by four pages of Sect. 16 (“March 22nd, 1877”) and an unpaged Chronological Appendix of five pages. There is a MS. List of Contents for the first twelve sections, which I transcribe, adding remaining contents:—

Sect. I. Introduction.—Nature and Art.—Gaelic Folk-lore.—Table of Dates.—Foundation of Macpherson’s Ossian.

Sect. II. Scotch Folk-lore.

Sect. III. Collecting Traditions: Method of Collection.—Macpherson’s Fingal.—Folk-lore of Old.—Morison, Fort William, Mac Cisaig, South Uist, Mull, etc.

Sect. IV. Irish Phonology.—Letters.—Reading MSS.—Grammar.—Result.—Book of Leinster.—Ossian Language.

Sect. V. Old Gaelic MSS. and their Contents.—Irish MS. List of Stories, 1100 A.D.—O’Donovan’s Catalogue—H 3, 17. Book of Leacan—H 2, 16.—Conclusion.—Fenian Poetry.

Sect. VI. Later Irish MSS. (1) Fionn’s Colloquy: Language, (2) The Fair Woman’s Hill.—The Death of Conlaoch.—The Lay of the Heads.—Deirdre.—Fraoch.—Cormac’s Birth.—The Battle of Gabhra.—The Lay of the Great Fool.[20]—Heroic Gaelic Literature.—Conclusion.

Sect. VII. Irish MSS., Brit. Museum.

Sect. VIII. Growth of Folk-lore: Trash Bags; Sorted Rubbish.—The Festivities at the House of Conan of Cearn Sleibhe, 1780.—A Geological Illustration.—A Breton Structure.—A Scotch Structure.—A Miniature Structure upon a large old Plan.—Irish Structure: The Dinn Seanchas.—Minglay Manners.—A Norse Structure: The Edda.—An Eastern Structure: The Arabian Nights.—A Sanscrit Structure: The Beast Epic.—Plan of Structures in the East and West.—An Irish Structure: The Book of Lismore, 1512-26.—A Medical (sic; rete mediæval?) Structure: O’Cein’s Leg.—A Fossil in a Structure: Conall Gulban, A.D.—The Materials of the Broken Structure of O’Cein’s Leg.—A Scotch Structure: Ossian.—Conclusion.

Sect. IX. The Growth of Folk-lore: The Drama.

Sect. X. Folk-lore and National Epics.—Homer.—National Poems and Folk-lore.

Sect. XI. Fact and Fiction.—The Aryan Theory.—Romans, Saxons, Danes, Norsemen.—Native Literature.—Kurroglou: Gaelic and Perso-Turkish Tales.—Master-thief: The Siege and Love Story.

Sect. XII. Early Scoto-Irish-Scandinavian Romantic History.—Keating, etc., 1629.—Cuchullain.—Children of Usnoth, Cumhall, Fionn, Caoilte, etc.—Oisein. O’Mahony’s Keating.—Fionn and the Feinne.—Ancient Fenian Warrior Bards. Fionn’s Pedigree.—Oral Fenian Pedigree.

Sect. XIII.[21] Scoto-Irish Heroes and their Religion, A.D. 284-591 (pp. 178-189).

Sect. XIV. Scoto-Irish Heroes in Tradition in the first-third centuries (pp. 190-201).

Sect. XV. Ethnological and Social (pp. 202-220).

The original MS. ended on pp. 202-220, with the following Conclusion, which I transcribe in full:

“The common Aryan traditional Gaelic history of the western parts of the British Isles is British, Scoto-Irish, and Scandinavian, from B.C. 20 and the days of Cuchullin down to Oscur, 281, Padruig 432, Conall Gulban 464, Column Cille 558, the battle of Clontarf and Murdoch Mac Brian 1014, and Magnus 1093.

“It is natural to find common traditions on both sides of the narrow sea, and the traditions of Gaelic Scotland and of Ireland were of old and still are[22] essentially the same in fact.

“No trace of Macpherson’s Gaelic Ossian of 1807 as a composition is known to exist on either side before 1763, when he printed a sample.

“It is but a continuance of the manners and customs of ancestral predatory Aryan nomads, who lived in a state of ‘war and individual action’, when Scotch and Irish would fight all round for heroes who purport to have been chiefs amongst their common ancestors, according to their common history, romance, and tradition, preserved in dialects of their common speech.

“The people still firmly believe in their traditional history. I think that their heroes were real men, about whom missionaries wove legends and Christians composed romances founded upon ancient traditions orally preserved.”

A sixteenth section was afterwards added (Dreams and their Interpretation) and, as already stated, a Chronological Appendix. In September 1876, Campbell went through the MS., and described it as “needing a deal of cutting down and condensation”. He had previously (May 1876) asked Messrs. Macmillan to publish the work, but, without seeing the MS., they declined.

As far as I could judge a work of over 250 pp. of MS. in the brief time at my disposal, I should say that it would no longer be desirable to print this Introduction as it stands. Thanks chiefly to the labours of German scholars, our knowledge of early Gaelic myth and literature has greatly increased since 1872, and in most respects more than revision would be required to bring the work up to date. But it still deserves careful study, and in 1876 it was so immeasurably ahead of anything published in this country, that its issue could not have failed to exercise a stimulating and beneficent influence upon the course of Celtic studies in these islands.

Vol. iii of this MS. series is lettered Translations. Campbell describes in a preliminary note what he has here done, as “scraps of translation made at odd times. To translate the whole (i.e., the texts contained in vol. i) would be very hard and very thankless work . . . . work for a professor, not for J. F. C., the collector.” He adds: “I know enough to be sure that the stuff corresponds to like stuff in Japan, Ceylon, and Eurasia.”

These scraps of translation are not arranged in the order of the printed text, or indeed in any order, and the volume is one of those which would best repay careful collation and indexing. In addition to the aforesaid scraps it contains numberless newspaper cuttings anent Ossian, and other odds and ends which it would probably be impossible to gather together again. In one place Campbell remarks upon the “common malady of his collectors, who insist upon explaining things they cannot possibly understand”.

There are more translations in a volume bound in red, lettered L. n. F., and marked in left-hand upper corners A. N. 5. Campbell thus describes them in a preliminary note (dated July 22, 1871):

“It is not translation of any one version of a story told in Gaelic. It is my way of telling in English the pith of a great many versions of the same story told in Gaelic, written in short notes and stored in a good memory, trained to this sort of oral collection. Fresh from hearing the story, this version of Fionn’s birth and the slaying of his father, Cumhal, was written. Nobody else used to do this sort of work. It is oral heroic tradition told by the collector. I doubt if I could do it now, after ten years.”

In July 1881, Campbell further notes:

“I am often asked about the second vol. of Leabhar na Feinne. This is a sample of part of the volume which probably never will be written. . . . . So if I were to set myself to this, I could work out vol. ii on this sort of plan. But if I did, the Irishmen would hate me for making their heroes the men of whom people tell wild tales. Nobody would read such rubbish. Nevertheless, no country in Europe has such a stock of heroic tradition as the West Highlands, orally preserved.

“The time of the action is the first five centuries of our era, according to Irish writers.

“I tell the story without dates, as I have learnt it orally from the poorest classes, or as I have got it from writings which purport to have been orally collected in Scotland from people equally untaught.

“I have found ready help from Irish scholars and books. Nature is better than Art when Art produces popular ballads like ‘Sam Hall’, and the natural man sings about his mythical ancestors out in the wilds.”

I think that even in 1881 Campbell was mistaken, and that he would have received more appreciative criticism at the hands of Irishmen and more welcome from the public than he looked for. At all events, if things have changed for the better in both respects, it is mainly owing to the influence of his life work.

This volume originally consisted of 74 pages folio (blue foolscap at beginning, white afterwards), but has been increased by the insertion of a number of unpaged, chiefly white, sheets of different sizes. At the beginning is a list of Contents for the original MS., which I transcribe. I had not time to draft in the additions.

“The origin of the Feinne, 3-5 (2 pages added).—Story of Cumhall, 6-11 (8 pages added).—Fionn’s birth and youthful exploits, 12-25.—Fionn’s baptism, 26-27.—Beast of Loch Lurgan, 28-29. Fionn’s wisdom-tooth.—The fish myth, 30-33.—Fionn’s revenge, 34-37.—Fionn in the wilds, 38.—Giant sailors, 39-43.—Dragon myth, 44-54.—Bran’s colour, etc.,—55-56. Fionn’s treasures and his cup, 57.—Fionn’s return, 58-62.—Fionn’s hunting, 63-65.—Fionn’s first battles, 66-73.—Fionn’s wooing, 74.”

It will be seen by this that Campbell had carried out his intention of re-telling the Finn saga in consecutive form to a very slight extent, not more, I should say, than to one-fifth of the projected work. What he has done deserves reprinting in a specialist periodical in these pages, for instance, or in the Transactions of the Inverness Gaelic Society. Students would find it a distinct advantage to have before them even a small portion of the frame-work fashioned by one who had his Fenian tradition so thoroughly at his fingers’ ends as had Campbell. But I may be excused if I say I think it would be very undesirable for anyone else to attempt to deal with his documents in the same way. The unrivalled combination of knowledge, critical power, and instinctive racial sympathy which gave to its owner his unique position in the study of folk-lore can hardly be expected from any other man. For us, the followers of Campbell, it is safer to keep to the beaten track of faithful collection than to essay a personal synthesis of tradition.

Some among the readers of Folk-Lore may, it is hoped, be able to do the work I have sketched in the foregoing pages, the work of rendering accessible to fellow-students the rich stores of folk-fancy, and of learning so full of life and penetration, as almost to deserve the name of genius, at present hidden away in the MSS. of Campbell of Islay.

In conclusion, I would fain express my grateful sense of the ready courtesy of the Chief Librarian and of the Officials of the Advocates’ Library.

Alfred Nutt.



  1. Cited as P. T. throughout this article.
  2. I do not know if this is the old man referred to supra, p. 372, as possessing the twenty-four tales of the cycle.
  3. Folk and Hero Tales from Argyllshire. Text and Translation, pp. 206-277. Notes, pp. 464-473. I shall refer to this version as McI., and to that of Mr. Campbell of Tiree (cf. Tales, 465) as J.G.C.
  4. These first four personages are apparently missing in both McI. and J. G. C., which have different openings. In both of these a King of Ireland appears with wife and son, and is identified with Brian Boru, but the connection seems different.
  5. O’C. is not a treasurer in either McI. or J. G. C.
  6. Only mentioned in McI. and J. G. C.
  7. Together with his wife, according to both the other versions.
  8. McI., Macan an Atha; J. G. C., Manus Mor.
  9. McI. and J. G. C., daughter of the King of the Great Universe.
  10. McI., a big, big man ; J. G. C., a man who carries her in the palm of his hand.
  11. McI., Macan-na-Sgéithe-Deirge.
  12. Does not appear in either McI. or J. G. C.
  13. 12 and 13 do not figure either in J. G. C. or McI.
  14. McI., Macan-na-Falluine-Fliùche; unnamed in J. G. C.
  15. 15 and 16 do not figure in the other two versions.
  16. Same name in McI.; unnamed in J. G. C.
  17. 18-30 do not figure in the other two versions.
  18. Similar incident in J. G. C., but not in McI.
  19. Scot. Celt. Rev., p. 76.
  20. What the author says respecting this lay adds nothing to the information given, L. n. F., p. 203.
  21. I add the pagination from Sect. XIII on. The List of Contents of the first twelve sections at beginning of volume indicates the paging.
  22. Added to original transcript by Campbell,