Page:Irish Lexicography.djvu/36

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28
ON IRISH LEXICOGRAPHY.

ableness of the world in its glory and pomp " ; 45 α 36, tuarcaib do ind-sin in uli fhlathiusa in domain co n-a ngloir ⁊ co n-a n-adbchlos, "he brought before him [ostendit ei] all the kingdoms of the world, with their glory and their pomp " ; cf. 46 β 45 ; ibid. 235 α 42 ba mor tra diumas ocus ddclos ocus bocasach in rig cholaig sin, " great was the pride, and pomp, and arrogance of that profane king" [for bocasach, cf. 154 β 19, 256 β 33, lucht in bocasaig ⁊ in diumais]. In the F. Mast, it is found as an adjective, adbclosaeh, with the mean- ing renowned, cf. in. 2178. But I have never met it in the sense given by O'Clery, and O'D., Suppl., as pleasure , joy ; • and I do not think that meaning can be justified.


In some cases a word is wrongly rendered which, from its very constancy of meaning in numerous occasions of occurrence, might have been expected to be free of variation. But here something must be allowed for the persistent habit of alliteration. The speaker or writer has ever had in his head a vast number of alliterative vocables, which the very necessities of his training has made it incumbent on him to acquire, and which, once acquired, are constantly thrusting themselves forward. This use, of course, operates on the translator who, allowing himself a certain liberty on the ground of this tendency to accumulate otiose epithet, prefers to give in a general way the meaning of the sentence, rather than come to close quarters with the separate words. In the Atlantis, rv. p. 212, we have an example of the way in which, as 0' Curry says, "old Irish writers burdened their text with adjectives of intenseness".

The adjective ainiarmartach, which O'Curry renders unmerciful, occurs, F. Mast., m. p. 2288, bá huttmall anbsaidh ainiarmartach a ccomhairle, which O'Donovan translates "their counsel was hasty, unsteady, and precipitate" . The word means, as its analysis shows, in-consequential, for iarmart is of familiar use in the sense of consequence, though Windisch seems to doubt this in his glossary : cf . F.Mast., m. p. 1784, ro bhen a droch iarmairt don dúthaig, "his territory experienced the ill effects of it"; LB., 45 β 1, uair ro-fitir an iarmairt no-biad de iar-tain, " he knew the consequences that would proceed from it thereafter". Or again, M. Rath, p. 170, ni dat coimedaig inill iarmartach-su, "thou art not a vigi- lant keeper of a flock" (O'Don.), where indeed inill, 'safe', is