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Speramus alterius ad Othini
ARGUMENT OF DUAN 1.*
Fingal when very young, making a voyage to the Orkney Islands,
was driven by stress of weather into a bay of Scandinavia, near the residence of Starno, king of Lochlin. Starno invites Finga! to a feast. Fingal, doubting the faith of the king, and mindful of a former breach of hospitality, reluses to go:-Starno gathers together his tribes; Fingal resolves to defend himself.— Night coming on, Duth-maruno proposes to Fingal to observe the motions of the enemy.-The king himself undertakes the watch. Advancing towards the enemy, he accidentally comes to the cave of Turthor, where Starno had contined Conban-Cargla, the captive daughter of a neighboring chief.-Her story is imperfect, a part of the original being lost.--Fingal comes to a place of worship, where Starno, and his son Swaran, consulted the spirit of Loda concerning the issue of the war.–The rencounter of Fingal and Swaran.--Duan first concludes with a description of the airy hall of Cruth-loda, supposed to be the Odin of Scandi
navia. A Tale of the times of old !
Why, thou wanderer unseen! thou bender of the thistle of Lora; why, thou breeze of the valley, hast thou left mine ear ? I hear no distant roar of streams! No sound of the harp from the rock! Come, thou hun. tress of Lutha, Malvina, call back his soul to the bard. I look forward to Lochin of lakes, to the dark billowy bay of U-thorno, where Fingal descends from ocean, from the roar of winds. Few are the heroes of Mor. ven in a land unknown!
Starno sent a dweller of Loda to bid Fingal to the feast ; but the king remembered the past, and all his rage arose. “ Nor Gormal's mossy towers, nor Star. no, shall Fingal behold. Deaths wander, like shadows, over his fiery soul! Do I forget that beam of light, the
The bards distinguished those compositions in which the nar. ration is often interrupted by episodes and apostrophes, by the Daine of Duan.
white-handed daughter of kings ?* Go, son of Loda; his words are wind to Fingal : wind, that, to and fro, drives the thistle in autumn's dusky vale. Duth-maruno, arm of death! Cromma-glas, of Iron shields ! Struthmor, dweller of battle's wing! Cromar, whose ships bound on seas, careless as the course of a meteor, on dark-rolling clouds! Arise around me, chil. dren of heroes, in a land unknown! Let each look on his shield like Trenmor, the ruler of wars.”—“Come down,” thus Trenmor said, “thou dweller between the harps ! Thou shalt roll this stream away, or waste with me in earth.”
Around the king they rise in wrath. No words come forth: they seize their spears. Each soul is rolled into itself. At length the sudden clang is waked on all their echoing shields. Each takes his hill by night; at intervals they darkly stand. Unequal bursts the hum of songs, between the roaring wind!
Broad over them rose the moon !
In his arms came tall Duth-maruno: he, from Croma of rocks, stern hunter of the boar! In his dark buat he rose on waves, when Crumthormof awaked its woods. In the chase he shone, among foes: No fear was thine, Duth-maruno!
“Son of daring Comhal, shall my steps be forward through night ? From this shield shall I view them, over their gleaming tribes? Starno, king of lakes, is before me, and Swaran, the foe of strangers. Their words are not in vain, by Loda's stone of power. Should Duth-maruno not return, his spouse is lonely at home, where meet two roaring streams on Crathmocraulo's plain. Around are hills, with echoing woods; the ocean is rolling neur. My son looks on
Agandecca, the daughter of Starno, whom her father killed, in account of her discovering to Fingal a plot laid against his life.
+ Crumthormoth, one of the Orkney or Shetland Islands
screaming sea-fowl, a young wanderer on the field. Give the head of a boar to Candona, tell him of his father's joy, when the bristly strength of U-thorno rolled on his lifted spear. Tell him of my deeds in war! Tell where his father fell !”
“Not forgetful of my fathers," said Fingal, “ I have bounded over the seas. Theirs were the times of dan. ger in the days of old. Nor settles darkness on me, before foes, though youthful in my locks. Chief of Crathmocraulo, the field of night is mine.”
Fingal rushed, in all his arms, wide bounding over Turthor's stream, that sent its sullen roar, by night, through Gormal's misty vale. A moonbeam glittered on a rock ; in the midst stood a stately form ; a form with floating locks, like Lochlin’s white-bosomed maids. Unequal are her steps, and short. She throws a bruken song on wind. At times she tosses her white arms : for grief is dwelling in her soul.
"Torcal.torno, of aged locks," she said, "where now are thy steps, by Lulan ? Thou hast failed at thine own dark streams, father of Conban-cargla ! But I behold thee, chief of Lulan, sporting by Loda's hall, when the dark-skirted night is rolled along the sky, Thou sometimes hidest the moon with thy shield. I have seen her dim, in heaven. Thou kindlest thy hair into meteors, and sailest along the night. Why am I forgot, in my cave, king of shaggy boars ? Look from the hall of Loda, on thy lonely daughter.'
“Who art thou,” said Fingal, “ voice of night ?"
He sked about her fathers.
“ Torcul-torno," she said, “ once dwelt at Lulan's foamy stream: he dwelt-but now, in Loda's hall, he