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CATH-L O D A:
POE E M.
HERE art thou, fon of the king, faid dark-haired Duth-maruno? Where haft thou failed, young beam of Selma?—He returns not from the bofom of night! Morning is spread on U-thorno: in his mift is the fun, on his hill,-Warriors, lift the shields, in my prefence. He muft not fall, like a fire from heaven, whofe place is not marked on the ground. He comes like an eagle, from the fkirt of his fqually wind! In his hand are the fpoils of foes.-King of Selma, our fouls were fad.
NEAR Us are the foes, Duth-maruno. They come forward, like waves in mift, when their
foamy tops are seen, at times, above the low-failing vapour.-The traveller fhrinks on his journey, and knows not whither to fly. No tremb ling travellers are we !-Sons of heroes, call forth the fteel.-Shall the fword of Fingal arife, or fhall a warrior lead?
THE deeds of old, faid Duth-maruno, are like paths to our eyes, O Fingal. Broad-fhielded
In this fhort episode we have a very probable account given us, of the origin of monarchy in Caledonia. The Caël, or Gauls, who poffeffed the countries to the north of the Firth of Edinburgh, were, originally, a number of diftinct tribes, or clans, each fubject to its own chief, who was free and independent of any other power. When the Romans invaded them, the common danger might, perhaps, have induced those reguli to join together, but, as they were unwilling to yield to the command of one of their own number, their battles were ill-conducted, and, confequently, unfuccefsful.-Trenmor was the first who reprefented to the chiefs, the bad confequences of carrying on their wars in this irregular manner, and advised, that they themselves should alternately lead in battle. They did fo, but they were unfuccessful. When it came to Trenmor's turn, he totally defeated the enemy, by his fuperior valour and conduct, which gained him fuch an interest among the tribes, that he, and his family after him, were regarded as kings; or, to use the poet's expreffion, the words of power rushed forth from Selma of kings. The regal authority, however, except in time of war, was but inconfiderable; for every chief, within his own diftrict, was abfolute and independent.-From the fcene of the battle in this epifode (which was in the valley of Crona, a little to the north of Agricola's wall) I fhould suppose that the enemies of the Caledonians were the Romans, or provincial Britons.
Trenmor is ftill feen, amidst his own dim years. Nor feeble was the foul of the king, There, no dark deed wandered in fecret. From their hundred ftreams came the tribes, to graffy Colglan-crona. Their chiefs were before them. Each ftrove to lead the war. Their. fwords were often half-unsheathed. Red rolled their eyes of rage. Separate they ftood, and hummed their furly fongs." Why should they yield to each other? their fathers were equal in war."
TRENMOR was there, with his people, ftately in youthful locks. He faw the advancing foe. The grief of his foul arofe. He bade the chiefs to lead, by turns: they led, but they were rolled away. From his own moffy hill, bluefhielded Trenmor came down. He led wideskirted battle, and the strangers failed. Around him the dark-browed warriors came: they ftruck the fhield of joy. Like a pleasant gale, the words of power rushed forth from Selma of kings. But the chiefs led, by turns, in war, till mighty danger rofe: then was the hour of the king to conquer in the field.
"Nor unknown, faid Cromma-glas of
In tradition, this Cromma-glas makes a great figure in that battle which Comhal loft, together with his life, to
fhields, are the deeds of our fathers.-But who fhall now lead the war, before the race of kings? Mift fettles on these four dark hills: within it let each warrior ftrike his fhield. Spirits may defcend in darkness, and mark us for the war."
-They went, each to his hill of mift. Bards marked the founds of the shields. Loudeft rung thy bofs, Duth-maruno. Thou must lead in
the tribe of Morni, I have juft now, in my hands, an Irish compofition, of a very modern date, as appears from the language, in which all the traditions, concerning that decifive engagement, are jumbled together. In juftice to the merit of the poem, I fhould have here prefented to the reader a tranflation of it, did not the bard mention some circumftances very ridiculous, and others altogether indecent. Morna, the wife of Comhal, had a principal hand in all the tranfactions previous to the defeat and death of her hufband; fhe, to use the words of the bard, who was the guiding far of the women of Erin. The bard, it is to be hoped, mifreprefented the ladies of his country, for Morna's behaviour was, according to him, fo void of all decency and virtue, that it cannot be supposed, they had chofen ber for their guiding flar.The poem confifts of many ftanzas. The language is figurative, and the numbers harmonious; but the piece is fo full of anachronisms, and fo unequal in its compofition, that the author, most undoubtedly, was either mad, or drunk, when he wrote it. It is worthy of being remarked, that Comhal is, in this poem, very often called, Combal na b' Albin, or Combal of Albion, which fufficiently demonftrates, that the allegations of Keating and O Flaherty, concerning Fion Mac-Comnal, are but of late invention,
LIKE the murmur of waters, the race of U-thorno came down. Starno led the battle, and Swaran of stormy ifles. They looked forward from iron fhields, like Cruth-loda fieryeyed, when he looks from behind the darkened moon, and ftrews his figns on night.
THE foes met by Turthor's ftream. They heaved like ridgy waves. Their echoing ftrokes are mixed. Shadowy death flies over the hofts. They were clouds of hail, with fqually winds in their skirts. Their fhowers are roaring toBelow them fwells the dark-rolling
STRIFE of gloomy U-thorno, why should I mark thy wounds? Thou art with the years that are gone; thou fadeft on my foul. Starno brought forward his fkirt of war, and Swaran his own dark wing. Nor a harmlefs fire is Duth-maruno's fword.-Lochlin is rolled over her ftreams. The wrathful kings are folded in thoughts. They roll their filent eyes, over the flight of their land.-The horn of Fingal was heard the fons of woody Albion returned. But many lay, by Turthor's ftream, filent in their blood.
CHIEF of Crom-charn, faid the king, Duthmaruno, hunter of boars! not harmless returns my eagle, from the field of foes. For this