The European Sky -God. 437
Finn's behalf. However that may be,^ at the wedding- feast in Tara Grainne, deeming Finn too old to be her partner, made love first to Oisin and, when he refused her, then to Diarmuid. He too turned a deaf ear to her request ; but she put him under bonds of danger and destruction that he should flee with her that very- night ere Finn and Cormac recovered from their cups. Since Finn, whenever he slept in Tara, kept the keys of the town, Grainne passed out through a postern-gate, and Diarmuid, who was forbidden by a tabu from pass- ing through a postern, leapt the wall. They escaped together to Doire dJia bJioth, the ' Oak-grove of the two huts,' in Clanrickard, where Diarmuid cut the trees of the grove and made of them a hut with seven doors. Next day Finn and the Fianna went in pursuit, and came up with the fugitives in the Oak-grove, At this critical moment Aonghus of the Brugh, foster-father of Diarmuid, spirited away Grainne under his mantle, while Diarmuid himself with a mighty leap sprang out beyond Finn and the Fianna, and that through the very door which Finn was guarding. Diarmuid came up with Aonghus and Grainne at Ros da shoileach, where they slept that night. At dawn Aonghus departed, after advising Diarmuid not to go into a tree with but one trunk, or a cave with but one door, or an island with but one approach ; never to eat his meal where he had cooked it ; never to lie where he had eaten ; and never to rise where he had lain. In other words, he was to be constantly on his guard against Finn, and even to change his place of sleeping in the night.
Of his next adventures — how he was helped by young Muadhan, who caught salmon for him on a rod of a
^ From this point I follow The Pursuit of Diarmuid and Grainne ( Trans- actions of the Ossianic Society for i8^^ iii. 47 ff. , Lady Gregory Gods and Fighting Men p. 344 ff., P. W. Joyce Old Celtic Romances London 1894 p. 277 ff.). Cp. the Highland versions given by J. F. Campbell Popular Tales of the West Highlands iii. 39 ff,, 54 f,, 55 ff.