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142 CELTIC POETRY.
ruined castle. The opening lines give a specimen of the style of the verse and the vigorous spirit of the measure: —
The Hosting here of Congal Claen. 'T was loud lark-caroling May When Congal, as the lark elate and radiant as the day, Rode forth from steep Rath-Keltar gate.
Of the felicity with which these double descriptive epithets are used there are a thousand specimens, such as
The white-maned, proud-neck-arehing tide ;
and they give the dominant characteristic of the style as in the original, with a grace and appropriateness which make them a natural part of the English language. In order to show how the Celtic narrative has been transformed into English poetry without losing its characteristic features, the two accounts of the episode in the battle in which Sweeny becomes smitten with a frenzy of fear by supernatural visitation may be compared. This is the original: —
" Fits of giddiness came over him at the sight of the horrors, grimness, and rapidity of the Gaels; at the looks, brilliance, and irksomeness of the foreigners ; at the rebounding, furious shouts and bellow-ings of the various embattled tribes on both sides, rushing against and coming into collision with one